U.S., Canadian Coast Guards, RCAF Rescue 31 Fishermen from Sinking Vessel

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter, shown here in a 2008 photo. A similar helicopter aided in the rescue of a disabled Canadian fishing vessel on March 2. Coast Guard / Petty Officer Richard Brahm

BOSTON — The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards and Royal Canadian Air Force rescued 31 fishermen from a disabled, Canadian fishing vessel over 130 miles south of Halifax, Nova Scotia, during the night of March 2. 

At 7:05 p.m., March 2, the Rescue Coordination Center in Halifax notified watchstanders at the Coast Guard First District Command Center that the 143-foot vessel, Atlantic Destiny, was disabled with a fire on board, and was taking on water. 

A U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod HC-144 Ocean Sentry fixed-wing crew, and two MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews launched and arrived on scene. 

A Royal Canadian Air Force CH-149 helicopter crew from 14 Wing Greenwood, in Nova Scotia, Canada, hoisted six crewmembers from the vessel, and dropped off two search and rescue technicians to assist in dewatering the vessel. 

The U.S. Coast Guard Jayhawk crews hoisted another 21 fishermen between the two helicopters. All hoisted crewmembers were taken to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, where they were transferred for any medical treatment. 

The remaining four crewmembers and two SAR technicians ceased dewatering efforts and were transferred to the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Cape Roger. 

The vessel owner is coordinating any salvage efforts. 

The weather on scene was 35 mph winds and 15-foot seas.