US Coast Guard, Good Samaritans rescue 13 people from sinking fishing vessel off Chincoteague, Virginia

A US Coast Guard Station Chincoteague 47-foot Motor Life Boat crew safely transfers 12 people ashore at the station, October 28, 2022, in Chincoteague, Virginia after they were rescued from the sinking fishing vessel Tremont approximately 101 kilometres southeast of Chincoteague. All 13 crewmembers on Tremont were safely rescued with no reported injuries. (Photo: US Coast Guard/Petty Officer 1st class Jonathan Lally)

The US Coast Guard and the crews of two Good Samaritan vessels rescued 13 people from a sinking commercial fishing vessel off Chincoteague, Virginia, on Friday, October 28.

Watchstanders with Coast Guard Sector Virginia received a mayday call at approximately 02:00 local time from the crew of the commercial fishing vessel Tremont, stating they were reportedly involved in a collision with the Panamanian-flagged containership MSC Rita approximately 101 kilometres southeast of Chincoteague.

Tremont‘s crew also reported they were sinking with 13 people aboard and abandoning the vessel.

The watchstanders issued an urgent marine information broadcast and directed the launch of two Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina aircraft, an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew and an HC-130 Hercules airplane crew, a Coast Guard Station Chincoteague Motor Life Boat boatcrew, as well as diverted the Sentinel-class fast response cutter Rollin Fritch to assist.

The Good Samaritan vessels, the research vessel Atlantis and the motor vessel Drystan, arrived on-scene to assist. Atlantis launched its smallboat to transfer 12 Tremont crewmembers to Drystan while a helicopter crew hoisted Tremont‘s captain out of the water.

The Tremont crewmembers were later transferred to shore with no reported injuries.

The cause of the collision is being investigated.

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