On Monday, the Coast Guard
rescued a disabled 21-foot vessel and its two crew members near the Montauk
jetties.The incident was mistakenly reported as having occurred on July 15 when in fact it took place on June 14.
At approximately 8 in the evening, the watchstanders at the U.S. Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound received a report of two people on a disabled vessel that had lost electrical power. The boaters only means of communication was a cell phone with a dying battery.
A rescue boat and crew were dispatched from the Montauk Coast Guard station, but communications with the disabled vessel was lost as the seas became increasingly turbulent as daylight waned.
Upon arrival at the foundering vessel, the Coast Guard found the mariner and his stepson wearing their life jackets and flying distress flags with flares at the ready.
“The owner was flying two distress flags,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Matthew Foster, the officer of the day at the Coast Guard Station Montauk. “It made it easier for our boatcrew to locate them, which greatly reduced our search time, especially since we were losing daylight and they had no electrical power.”
Officer Foster cautioned against relying exclusively on cell phone communication while boating. “Having just a cell phone,” he said, “as a means of communication out at sea, although sometimes effective, should not be the mariner’s primary method, especially if you lose signal or there is no way to charge the battery. Ideally the Coast Guard recommends having either a handheld or fixed marine band radio in case of emergency.”
The Coast Guard towed the disabled vessel to the West Lake boat ramp.