Maritime Law

U.S. Coast Guard Announces Reward For Man Making Fake “Mayday” Calls


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Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. is comprised of attorneys that are nationally-recognized industry leaders in the field of maritime and admiralty law. Our team of lawyers has over a century of combined experience, has successfully handled over 3,000 cases, and has recovered over 300 million dollars in damages for our clients.

Maritime accidents are extremely serious and often lead to severe injuries and fatalities. The maritime accident lawyers at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. have represented hundreds of clients in cases involving boat crashes, cruise line assaults and other injuries that have occurred on the high seas. These matters are taken very seriously, so it is no wonder that the U.S. Coast Guard’s Recent response to a series of fake “mayday” calls was a very stern one.
The U.S. Coast Guard has recently announced that it is offering a $3,500 reward for help in catching a man responsible for making at least 20 fake mayday calls on a marine radio operating in the Monroe, Michigan area. However, the calls have been going on for quite some time. According to the Coast Guard’s Cleveland office, the man began calling in 2010, making various accident claims including that his boat was sinking. There are no suspects as of yet, but the Coast Guard is posting 15 recordings to see if anyone can recognize the culprit’s voice.

While the caller may think it’s all fun and games, Coast Guard crews respond to every report of an accident at sea and, according to Lt. Justin Westmiller in Detroit, the fake calls could lead to a serious disaster by diverting rescue teams from a real emergency.

Sometimes all it takes is a few minutes’ time to make the difference between saving a life and a victim succumbing to their injuries. By taking valuable time away from rescue crewmembers who could have been helping real victims in the past two years, the suspect may be causing innumerable tragedies or worse, deaths.

Lt. Westmiller explained the prank caller has been using marine band radio VHF-FM Channel 16, the international hailing and distress frequency. The calls are originating from the Bolles Harbor area on Lake Erie in Monroe County’s Monroe Township, but no further information regarding the suspect’s identity or whereabouts has been released. The U.S. Coast Guard is asking anyone who has information about the fake mayday caller to call 800-773-2587.

Our maritime accident lawyers have witnessed many incidents take place at sea, but this man’s disregard for the lives he is placing at risk is unacceptable. If he is in fact apprehended, he may face several charges as well as lawsuits filed by anyone who may have been harmed because of his negligent and wanton actions.

Anyone who has suffered an accident or injury at sea has the right to seek legal help with maritime accident attorneys who will protect their rights and fight for them to receive compensation for their pain and suffering. If you or someone you know was involved in an accident at sea or was the victim of a selfish prank that led to injuries, contact our firm today to discuss your options and legal rights.

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