ATLANTIC CITY – Two fishermen have been rescued by the Coast Guard after their boat caught fire 34 miles east of Barnegat Inlet.
On November 5, one of the fishermen aboard their vessel called the Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay how their 53-foot Sport Fisher fishing vessel ‘Reel E Bugging’ was ablaze and needed immediate help.
Sector Delaware Bay watchstanders put out an urgent broadcast informing vessels in the area of the situation, as the fishermen were preparing life jackets and a life raft to abandon ship. The watchstanders also launched an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City and two 47-foot Motor Lifeboat boat crews from Coast Guard Station Manasquan Inlet and Coast Guard Station Barnegat Light to the location.
Once arrived, the Dolphin aircrew was able to find the life raft and bring the fishermen to safety. They then transported both of them to Monmouth Executive Airport in Wall Township where they were met by family.
Afterwards, a Coast Guard marine safety announcement was published to alert any mariners in the area of possible debris from the vessel fire.
“Today’s case was a perfect example of a unified effort between prepared boaters, the sector, small boats and the air station,” said Lt. j.g. Matt Devlin, a Dolphin helicopter pilot at Air Station Atlantic City. “We are happy that the mariners realized they were in distress and we were able to be there quickly. Ultimately their preparedness led to our success.”