WARRENTON, Ore. — An aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Astoria, Ore., hoisted one man after a vessel ran against the north jetty on the Columbia River near Ilwaco, Wash., Friday afternoon.
There were no reports of pollution or major injuries.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Columbia River, in Warrenton, were contacted at approximately 12 p.m. via VHF-FM radio by four mariners whose 17-foot vessel had become disabled and was drifting toward the jetty. Three people were able to get to shore while the vessel’s operator remained aboard to receive a tow from the good Samaritan crew of fishing vessel Beachcomber who towed the craft away from the jetty.
Search-and-rescue controllers diverted an aircrew aboard an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter, and directed the launch of a boatcrew from Station Cape Disappointment, in lwaco, Wash., aboard a 47-foot Motor Life Boat and a shore party to assist the stranded boaters. Two of the three stranded boaters were able to climb to safety with assistance from the Station Cape Disappointment shore party.
The aircrew was able to successfully hoist the third stranded man aboard the helicopter and transported him to Station Cape Disappointment.
The Cape Disappointment MLB crew took over the tow of the rescued vessel, towing it safely to the Fort Canby boat ramp in Columbia River’s Baker Bay.
“The Coast Guard thanks the crew of the fishing vessel Beachcomber for promptly rendering assistance by maneuvering close enough to the jetty to throw a line to the pleasure craft in distress and tow it to safety,” said Capt. Bruce Jones, Sector Columbia River commander and Jayhawk co-pilot for the case. “A few more minutes banging against the rocks and the vessel would have been seriously damaged or destroyed. Today serves as a reminder that even on beautiful, relatively calm days the Columbia River entrance can become dangerous to vessels with any type of mechanical failure. Boaters should always be thoroughly prepared to be placed in a survival situation.”