One of two sailors who abandoned their boat in rough seas hundreds of miles off the Virginia coast was found in the water a day later Monday and pulled to safety on a merchant ship, the Coast Guard said. The other sailor was found dead.It certainly helps to have the proper safety equipment. Nevertheless, it's a pretty big ocean out there. Finding a person in the water is like trying to find a lost key on a football field while driving a moped.
Lochlin Reidy, 58, from Woodbridge, Conn., was spotted about 4 a.m. after a Coast Guard plane saw a strobe light in the ocean about 400 miles east of Virginia Beach and flew over the area to investigate, said Officer Krys Hannum, a Coast Guard spokeswoman.
How'd they end up in the water? Original reports were they had abandoned their vessel and a wave knocked over their life raft. Seems that's not the case.
The two men who were swept overboard had been making preparations for all five crew members to get into the life raft when a wave knocked them overboard. They had not voluntarily tried to abandon the boats as the Coat Guard said earlier.It's the sort of case a SAR dog lives for.
The search for the men began Sunday morning after Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center Norfolk received an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPRIB) at 6 a.m. from the 45-foot sailboat Almeisan, headed from New England to Bermuda.Woof! Woof!
A C-130 plane from Elizabeth City, N.C., was launched and upon arriving at the location, discovered a life raft. The sailors aboard the Almeisan reported that Tighe and Reidy had abandoned the Almeisan into a life raft.
Several surface and air units were involved in the search throughout the day and evening, including three C-130 airplanes and two HH-60 Jayhawk helicopters from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., four merchant ships and an airplane from Halifax, Nova Scotia.