Local Coast Guardsmen coordinate rescue of six from sinking catamaran

Posted at 7:59 PM, Jan 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-19 19:59:30-05

ATLANTIC OCEAN – Watchstanders with the 5th Coast Guard District in Portsmouth coordinated the rescue of six sailors from a catamaran approximately 275 miles southwest of Bermuda Thursday.

The watchstanders received a notification that the 75-foot catamaran Ninah, with six people aboard, had reportedly been struck by a rogue wave and was taking on water.

The watchstanders directed the launch of an airplane crew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City and diverted the crew of the motor vessel Hercules Leader, an Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System (AMVER), to the catamaran’s location.

The six sailors had abandoned their sinking vessel and were rescued from their life raft by the crew of the Hercules Leader.

The sailors will be taken to Bermuda.

“The crew of the Ninah were well prepared for their voyage and had a plethora of safety and emergency equipment aboard their vessel,” said Brian Neilan, an operations unit leader with the 5th District command center. “Their preparation, along with the invaluable assistance from the crew of the AMVER vessel Hercules Leader, contributed to their rescue today.”