March 14, 2006
A Coast Guard helicopter arrived on scene within 50 minutes of the fishing vessel Slayer's initial mayday call and with assistance from the Good Samaritan vessel Aleutian Dream, located a raft, survival suit, and life ring approximately five miles south of Point Gardner. By mid-morning the Coast Guard was scouring the area with an additional HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and the Coast Guard Cutter Anacapa; by early afternoon, two Civil Air Patrol (CAP) aircraft had also joined the search effort.
On scene conditions included 35 to 40 knot winds, seas at 10 to 12 feet, and a water temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Friday night, the Coast Guard employed a helicopter equipped with infra red and night vision technology to conduct additional redundant searches of the adjacent shorelines and the debris field. A Self Locating Data Marker Buoy was dropped earlier that day that kept pace with the drift and transmitted its position via satellite to the Coast Guard Command Center in Juneau so searchers could better understand the conditions and direction debris or survivors would travel.
Coast Guard and CAP search teams continued their coordinated efforts into the second and third day, searching the moving debris field and re-searching areas over water and on shore that were covered on the previous days. A ground search party provided by Sitka Mountain Rescue volunteered to search in the vicinity of Point Garner, four and a half miles north and upwind of where the vessel is thought to have gone down. They found no sign of survivors having made it ashore.
Coast Guard and CAP crews logged over 60 hours of flight time during the three day period, and in concert with the Coast Guard Cutter Anacapa and Good Samaritan vessels, searched an area comprised of 918 miles of shoreline and 735 miles of open water multiple times.
Personnel from Coast Guard Marine Safety Office Juneau are currently investigating the incident.
Source of News:
Publish A Letter on SitNews Read Letters/Opinions