Video: USCG Evacuates Six From Disabled Yacht in Heavy Weather

Image courtesy USCG

Published Jun 20, 2021 3:24 PM by The Maritime Executive

U.S. Coast Guard aircrews from three different stations rescued six people from an 80-foot sailing yacht on Saturday at a position about 80 miles west of Crescent City, California. 

Coast Guard Sector Humboldt Bay received a VHF distress call at 1545 hours from the crew of the yacht Barlovento, who reported that the boat was disabled, taking on water and had a person aboard with a head and arm injury. The situation was urgent, as the conditions on scene were rought, with winds of 60 miles an hour and seas of 20 feet. 

Watchstanders launched a fixed-wing aircraft out of Air Station Sacramento to provide overwatch and a Sector Humboldt Bay Dolphin helicopter crew. The Dolphin crew arrived on scene, hoisted the injured person from the Barlovento and transported them to local emergency medical services at Humboldt Bay.  

With the Barlovento expected to lose power, Sector Humboldt Bay asked for support from an Air Station North Bend Dolphin helicopter crew.

The Sector Humboldt Bay Dolphin crew returned to the scene and hoisted three people from the Barlovento; the Air Station North Bend Dolphin crew arrived later and hoisted the remaining two people. All of the survivors were transported to Sector Humboldt Bay.

“This case was a great example of a successful, multi-unit effort,” said Lt. Ryan O’Neill, a Dolphin aircraft commander at Sector Humboldt Bay. “The careful coordination between the two helicopters with support from the C-27 allowed us to save all six sailors.”

The Barlovento remained afloat and abandoned, and watchstanders issued a broadcast warning to mariners about the potential hazard to navigation.