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Good Samaritan saves fishing vessel crew near Zarembo Island, Alaska

Date: Dec. 13, 2012
District 17 Public Affairs Detachment Anchorage

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center watchstanders and a good Samaritan assisted a fishing vessel reportedly taking on water in Snow Pass, west of  Zarembo Island, Wednesday.

The good Samaritan crew, aboard the 65-foot motor vessel Arik, was able to tow the 36-foot wooden hull troller Carrie Arlene to a cove on the north side of Bushy Island where they anchored and successfully dewatered the fishing vessel.

The command center watchstanders received a distress call on VHF marine radio channel 16 from the two-man crew of the Carrie Arlene, stating that they were taking on water and donning survival suits in case they needed to abandon ship. The watchstanders issued an urgent marine information broadcast requesting any vessel in the area to respond if safe to do so.

The crew of the Arik responded to the call for help and was able to follow distress flares deployed by the crew of the Carrie Arlene.

“Good Samaritans are instrumental in helping the Coast Guard come to the aid of boaters in distress,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Harkins, a watchstander at Sector Juneau.  “The willingness of good Samaritans to step up and help a fellow mariner can often keep a case like this from developing into something worse.”

"The preparedness of the fishing vessel crew and their quick actions in notifying the Coast Guard of their deteriorating situation was critical to their rescue," said Harkins. "The crew’s use of survival equipment including survival suites, flares and their marine VHF radio, not only kept them safe, but was essential in helping responders find them."

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as rain with 35 mph winds and 4 to 6-foot seas.

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