MARITIME CASUALTY - WHAT WENT WRONG AND WHY

Our mission is to investigate and discover the facts and real reason for marine casualties what really happened and why. For years we have gone beyond the headlines and looked for real answers.

Articles Posted in Fishermen

A crewman went missing from the fishing vessel Stormie B. The crewmember in an inflatable boat powered by two oars, was wearing a survival suit with strobe. The Coast Guard was able to find him, deploy a rescue swimmer, hoist the crewman and safely transport him to the local cannery near Lazy Bay in Kodiak, Alaska.

The call for help came from the master of the fishing vessel Stormie B at 12:36 a.m., who notified the Coast guard of an overdue crewmember in the inflatable boat powered by two oars. The crew of the Stormie B reportedly spent two hours searching but were unable to find the missing man. Sector watchstanders directed the launch of an aircrew from Air Station Kodiak and the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Naushon. The aircrew was able to locate the overdue crewmember, who was wearing a survival suit with a strobe light activated, which possible saved his life.

This man was saved. He could have died. Maritime injury specialists can determine when and how much compensation might be due in case of injury or death due to improper equipment, failure to follow safety procedures, failure to meet safety regulations, etc.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard rescued four crewmen Thursday from a fishing vessel that ran aground near Dutch Harbor.

Although no injuries were reported, incidents like this are often serious and need detailed investigation by seasoned experts to determine if there is case for the crew to claim damages.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew from Cutter Bertholf hoisted all four survivors from a rock near the grounded fishing vessel Endurance, approximately one mile west of Egg Island, near the entrance to Beaver Inlet, Unalaska. They were flown to Dutch Harbor and placed in the care of awaiting EMS with no injuries reported at the time of transfer.

The Endurance reported at 10:57 p.m. Wednesday that they had run aground, were severely listing, and taking on water. The helicopter crew arrived on scene just after midnight to find all four survivors huddled on a rock with the tide coming in. They had escaped the grounded vessel on a skiff. All four were wearing life jackets. Capt. Timothy Brown, Bertholf’s commanding officer. “Thankfully, these mariners were well-prepared for emergency, and took the proper actions in time to notify the Coast Guard and get off the vessel. We were very fortunate to be close by and able to arrive on scene quickly.” The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of the grounding, as well as monitoring the grounded vessel.

This crew was lucky to escape. If rescue had not been in time they could have been drowned by the rising tide, or suffered exposure overnight. Incidents need to be investigated for compliance with the laws of the sea and for mariners to be awarded compensation.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard began a search Thursday evening for a 75-year-old man on a 14-foot skiff reported missing near Port Angeles.

The man was reported missing by a fellow fisherman after losing sight of his fishing vessel and was overdue to return to shore.

The mariner was fishing near Freshwater Bay to Crescent Bay Buoy 2 and back to Freshwater Bay. The mariner’s friends last talked to him via cell phone at 3:26 p.m. and about 10 minutes later saw him approximately a half mile west of the Crescent Bay Buoy 2 traveling on his kicker motor westward. It was reported that the overdue mariner’s main engine was not working earlier in the day and he had been using his kicker to maneuver. The mariner also reportedly had a large amount of fishing gear and other general items on his vessel.

Watchstanders at the 13th Coast Guard District command center were notified at 6:40 p.m. An urgent marine information broadcast was issued as an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Port Angeles, and a small boat crew from Station Port Angeles were directed to respond and on scene.

Multiple partner agencies and a rotation of Coast Guard crews participated in the coordinated search operations, including the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Vector and crew, as well as Naval Station Whidbey Island helicopter crews.

The overdue mariner had no reported medical problems and was reported to most likely have had food and water onboard as well as life jackets, but reportedly no VHF radios on board.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard suspended the search Friday for a 47-year-old Jason LaBrie of Oregon City, Oregon, a crewman who reportedly fell overboard while underway fishing for halibut 28 miles northwest of Grays Harbor.

Slip and fall incidents are common enough, but overboard incidents, usually avoidable, are often fatal.

Fishermen aboard the 26-foot vessel Defiance II activated an emergency position indicating radio beacon after realizing LaBrie was missing.

Coast Guard watchstanders at the 13th District command center received the alarm at 12:39 p.m.

At 12:50 p.m., the Coast Guard initiated an urgent marine information radio broadcast notifying all mariners in the area and a Coast Guard 47-foot Motor Lifeboat crew responded, along with a Jayhawk helicopter crew diverted from other flight operations. At 1:10 p.m., Coast Guard search and rescue crews were on scene.

A Coast Guard Air Spartan airplane crew was airborne and en route, and the Coast Guard Cutter Elm and crew diverted from a living marine resources mission at approximately 3:30 p.m. to assist with the search.

The Coast Guard saturated an area of approximately 244 square miles, completing 18 searches over more than 22 hours.

Units involved in the search:
Coast Guard Sector Columbia River watchstanders
Coast Guard Air Station Astoria MH-60 Jayhawk crews
Coast Guard Station Grays Harbor 47-foot MLB crews
Coast Guard Cutter Elm and crew
Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento HC-27 Spartan crew

“The decision to suspend a search is one of the most difficult decisions we have to make,” said Capt. Nathan Coulter, 13th Coast Guard District, chief of incident management. “We offer our deepest sympathies to the family of Jason LaBrie at this difficult time.”

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard medevaced a crew-woman from the fishing vessel American Triumph 100 miles northwest of Cold Bay, Alaska, Sunday.

A helicopter crew hoisted the crew member at 10 p.m. and safely transported her to a LifeMed flight team in Cold Bay for further transport to Anchorage.

The medevac request was received from Health Force Partners on behalf of fishing vessel American Triumph at approximately 4 p.m. Saturday for a 31-year-old crew member apparently experiencing symptoms of an allergic reaction.

Health related incidents at sea can be caused by neglect of safety precautions, or other problems, and can lead to future ongoing health problems, or loss of income through inability to work at no fault of the injured crew member.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard announced today a formal marine casualty investigation has been convened into the marine casualty of the commercial fishing vessel Coastal Reign which capsized February 20, 2021 resulting in the loss of two lives.

The crew of the 38-foot fishing vessel, Coastal Reign, were attempting to cross the Tillamook Bay Bar inbound when the vessel capsized with four crewmembers on board.

Coast Guard authorized the investigation pursuant to the authority contained in Title 46, United States Code, Section 6301 and the regulations thereunder.

Upon completion of the investigation, the Coast Guard will issue a report of investigation with collected evidence, established facts and conclusions and recommendations regarding these marine casualties.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

A Coast Guard helicopter medevaced a crewman from the fishing vessel Alaska Ocean Sunday approximately 30 miles northeast of Cold Bay, Alaska, with a crush injury to his arm.

News of the arm injury aboard the fishing vessel Alaska Ocean came in at at approximately 7 p.m. asking medical assistance for the 45-year-old crew member who suffered arm crush injury.

The Alaska Ocean was 60 miles from Cold Bay during the initial call for help. Watchstanders directed the launch of the Jayhawk aircrew from the Forward Operating Location Cold Bay.

The Jayhawk aircrew hoisted the man at approximately 10:30 p.m. and transferred him to the local Cold Bay medical clinic to wait for further transport to Anchorage.

Such injuries can mean that life as a fisherman is ended and the injured person may no longer be able to work aboard ship. Expenses for treating the injury may be only the beginning as retraining for another job on shore can be life changing and expensive. It is important to know your rights and get expert advice to avoid the potentially devastating consequences of an injury at sea.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

A Coast Guard helicopter medevaced a fisherman with severe leg injuries that were sustained aboard the Magnus Martens Wednesday in the Bering Sea, about 80 miles northeast of Dutch Harbor.

The helicopter crew aboard Cutter Alex Haley, used a rescue litter to hoist the badly injured crewman from the vessel Magnus Martens after he suffered a severe leg injury. He was flown Dutch Harbor where weather prevented normal transportation, so he was further transported by helicopter to Cold Bay into the care of Guardian Flight Alaska personnel for further transport to Anchorage.

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Alex Haley received initial notification about the injured man while on patrol in the Bering Sea in the vicinity of Unimak Island.

The man was initially taken to Dutch Harbor to receive care, but needed to be taken to a higher level of care. The weather at the time did not allow a contracted provider to pick up the injured man in Dutch Harbor, so the Coast Guard helicopter crew flew him to Cold Bay for the transfer to Guardian Flight care.

“Due to the range from Dutch Harbor and because the fisherman’s severe injuries required additional time to place him in a rescue litter, the helicopter needed to refuel at sea,” said Lt. Wes Jones, aircraft commander for the case. “Helicopter in-flight refueling is an incredibly demanding and complex maneuver for both the cutter and the aircraft to increase on scene endurance. The combined teamwork of the crew aboard Alex Haley, the Magnus Martens, and the 17th District command center enabled us to get this man on a Guardian Flight aircraft headed to Anchorage to receive the care he needs.”

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard medevaced the chief engineer from a fishing vessel Frontier Spirit approximately 70 miles northwest of Saint Paul, Tuesday.

A helicopter crew from Kodiak safely hoisted the 43-year-old shortly after noon, and transferred him to awaiting emergency medical services personnel in Saint Paul Island for transport to Anchorage.

The medevac request came direct from the fishing vessel Frontier Spirit for the chief engineer who was experiencing abdominal pain. A Coast Guard duty flight surgeon, recommended a medevac. The aircrew launched from Forward Operating Location Cold Bay.

On-scene weather conditions were 20 mph winds, 25 foot seas, and 10 miles visibility.

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

The Coast Guard rescued a 70-year-old man from the waters of Union Bay, Alaska, northwest of Meyers Chuck, Sunday.

A Coast Guard helicopter crew hoisted the man, who was in the water clinging to a piece of debris, and took him to awaiting emergency medical services in Ketchikan, Alaska. The man was reported to be in stable condition.

Watchstanders received a search and rescue satellite alert from the fishing vessel Irony at approximately 4:46 p.m. An air crew from Sitka and the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Anacapa launched to conduct the search and rescue mission.

“Thankfully due to the Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon we were able to locate the man in the water quickly,” said Nick Meyers the Sector Juneau command duty officer. “This allowed us to deploy our survival swimmer and hoist the man to safety to get him to further medical treatment.”

by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading

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