It has been a busy week for the U.S. Coast Guard, whose emergency crew members have dedicated their lives to helping maritime accident victims. Accidents at sea can be extremely dangerous, leading to severe injuries and sometimes death. While there are many factors that can contribute to accidents on pleasure crafts, commercial ships and even cruise vessels, any type of accident at sea can be devastating.
The Coast Guard is currently searching for a man who fell off a commercial fishing vessel into the Atlantic Ocean off northeast Florida. The victim, Peter Steewell, of Pompano Beach, fell into the water while sword fishing Thursday afternoon roughly 400 miles east of St. Augustine.
Authorities don’t know what caused Steewell to fall from the vessel, but as of Friday, Coast Guard officials said that a commercial freight ship that was en route to Spain had been diverted to join crews in the search.
Coast Guard officials also stated that Steewell was not wearing a life jacket at the time of the incident. His vessel, a 57-foot longliner fishing boat called The Fine Tuna, is based in Wanchese, N.C.
As crews continue the search for Steewell, another Coast Guard rescue operation ended on a positive note.
The Coast Guard rescued four people – and their dog – in Southwest Washington Friday morning after their vessel ran aground. Coast Guard officials received a mayday call shortly after 2:30 a.m. from a 61-foot fishing vessel called the Genesis A. The boat appeared to have run aground on a sand bar near Leadbetter Point, at the entrance to Willapa Bay.
Coast Guard crews launched a Jayhawk helicopter from Air Station Astoria, a 47-foot lifeboat from Grays Harbor and emergency responders from Cape Disappointment to assist the victims and at around 3:37 a.m., the four victims and their dog were airlifted to safety. Luckily, no one sustained any injuries.
Coast Guard pollution investigators and Washington Department of Ecology stated they will be evaluating the sandbar for possible pollution resulting from the accident, the cause of which remains unknown.
While this rescue mission had a happy ending, there are many maritime accidents that do not result in the victims’ safe recovery. Because of the potential for disaster at sea, anyone going out on a boat or pleasure craft is always advised to wear a life jacket incase an accident were to occur.
The maritime accident lawyers at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. know exactly how dangerous the open waters can be. No matter how much a sea-goer tries to protect themselves, tragedy can strike at any time. Following any kind of accident at sea, it is imperative that victims and their loved ones seek legal assistance to file a case and protect their rights. If the incident was the result of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, our maritime accident attorneys stop at nothing so those responsible are held accountable for their actions.
If you or a loved one were hurt while on a boat, cruise, jet ski, or any other water craft, contact our attorneys today to see how we can help bring you justice for your pain and suffering.
Photo Credit: USCG
Published on January 25, 2013
Categories: Maritime Matter of the Week