The Coast Guard rescued two kayakers Friday when they became stranded after paddling from Juneau to Couverden Island.
A Response Boat-Medium from Juneau picked up the kayakers from the northern tip of Couverden Island at approximately 10 p.m., then brought them to where they were parked near Statter Harbor in Auke bay. There were no injuries reported.
The initial phone call from one of the kayakers at approximately 9:15 p.m. requesting assistance. The kayaker indicated that he and a male friend had become exhausted after an approximate 9-hour, 23-mile paddle in their 10-foot kayaks. He expressed concerns about running out of daylight, having no lifejackets, no exposure suits, no warm clothing, no food, water, no survival equipment, nor means of communication aside from a cell phone running low on battery.
“These kayakers made several all-too-common mistakes before heading out on the water yesterday,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Theodore Bach, Station Juneau response boat coxswain for the case. “They were lucky to have enough cell phone battery left to call for help. It is very common for boaters to head out on the water unprepared for the conditions. The water temperature is still frigid and the air temperatures at night still dip into the 30s. Hypothermia is just one way that Alaskan boaters die each spring.”
by Tom Evans, Injury at Sea. Continue Reading