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Coast Guard Suspends Search for Overboard Crewmember of Container Ship

The Coast Guard suspended the search Wednesday for a Japanese crewmember reported overboard from the container ship Hercules Highway, approximately 805 miles northeast of Oahu.

Container ship Hercules Highway

Container ship Hercules Highway

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center were notified at approximately 8:23 a.m., Monday regarding the 23-year-old male who was reported overboard from the container ship Hercules Highway.

The crewmember was last seen at approximately 7 p.m., Sunday.

As part of the AMVER program, the motor vessel’s St. Andrews, Anne Gret and the UACC Masafi assisted the Hercules Highway in the search for the crewmember.

AMVER, sponsored by the Coast Guard, is a unique, computer-based, and voluntary global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea. With AMVER, rescue coordinators can identify participating ships in the area of distress and divert the best-suited ship or ships to respond.

Approximately 2,255 square miles were searched.

The Coast Guard regularly coordinates with DoD, commercial vessels that are part of the AMVER program and international partners to conduct searches in the Pacific where extreme distances often limit the resources immediately available to respond.

The 14th Coast Guard District area of responsibility encompasses more than 12.2 million square miles of the Central and South Pacific.

 

Coast Guard Suspends Search for Missing Cruise Ship Crewmember

The Coast Guard suspended the search Wednesday for a 34-year old male Filipino crewmember reported overboard from the cruise ship Grand Princess approximately 1,133 miles northeast of Hilo.

The Grand Princess

The Grand Princess

The SLDMB is used in search and rescue missions and is equipped with a GPS sensor. Upon deployment in the water, it transmits its location periodically to the Coast Guard to assist with developing search areas.

As part of the AMVER program, the container ship Horizon Reliance along with the Grand Princess’s sister ship Star Princess assisted in search efforts.

More than 4,900 square miles were searched.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center in Honolulu were notified at approximately 12 a.m. Tuesday that the 34-year old was overboard.

“Suspending a search is always an incredibly difficult decision to make,” said Lt. Justin Gear, a command duty officer of the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center. “It’s done with much deliberation and after a concerted effort to ensure that the Coast Guard has conducted a thorough search and saturated all probable locations for a survivor. We offer our thoughts and prayers to the family and loved ones.”

Man Overboard! Search for Overboard Cruise Crewmember Underway in Pacific

The search is underway for a crewmember reported overboard from a cruise ship approximately 1,133 miles northeast of Hilo, Tuesday.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center were notified at approximately 12 a.m., regarding a 34-year-old male Filipino national who was reported overboard from the Grand Princess.

The Grand Princess

The Grand Princess

The crewmember was last seen at approximately 10:26 p.m., Monday.

An HC-130 Hercules airplane crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barber’s Point is currently on scene and the cruise ship has changed course and is searching for the missing passenger.

As part of the AMVER program, the container ship Horizon Reliance is assisting in the search along with the Grand Princess’s sister ship, Star Princess.

AMVER, sponsored by the Coast Guard, is a unique, computer-based, and voluntary global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea. With AMVER, rescue coordinators can identify participating ships in the area of distress and divert the best-suited ship or ships to respond.
Weather conditions on scene are winds of approximately 20 mph, seas of 7 feet and a water temperature of approximately 70 degrees.

For more information, contact the 14th Coast Guard District external affairs office at (808) 535-3230.

Woman Overboard! Search Underway for Passenger Reported Overboard From Cruise Ship

The search is underway for a passenger reported overboard from a cruise ship approximately 750 miles northeast of Hilo.

A flare marks where the a sailor fell into the ocean when I was visiting the USS Essex.

A flare marks where the a sailor fell into the ocean when I was visiting the USS Essex.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center were notified at approximately 1 p.m. by the crew of the Grand Princess that a 30-year-old American female was overboard.

The passenger was last seen at approximately 12 p.m.

The cruise ship has changed course and is currently searching for the missing passenger. An HC-130 Hercules airplane crew is en route from Air Station Barber’s Point.

For more information, contact the 14th Coast Guard District public affairs office at (808) 535-3230.

Coast Guard and Navy Rescue One Man – Searching for Another Who Fell Overboard

The Coast Guard and U.S. Navy have rescued one mariner from a sailboat in distress and are searching for another who fell overboard 500 miles west of Midway Atoll Sunday.

A Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter

A Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter

Coast Guard Joint Rescue Coordination Center Honolulu was contacted by Marine Rescue Coordination Center Falmouth, United Kingdom, at 11:30 p.m., notifying them that one of two crewmembers had fallen overboard from a 38-foot sailing vessel. The 35 year old man overboard is wearing a yellow lifejacket with a light and was reportedly conscious when he went into the water. Both crewmembers are citizens of the United Kingdom and the remaining person aboard was described as an inexperienced sailor.

A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules airplane crew out of Air Station Barbers Point on the island of Oahu, Hawaii deployed at 2:15 a.m. to begin a search of the area. Due to the distance and time of travel from Honolulu, a second HC-130 crew is deploying to alternate search times as crews recover at Wake Island. The crews have the capability to deploy a life raft should they locate the missing mariner.

The U.S. Navy warship USS Peleliu (LHA 5), a Tarawa Class amphibious assault ship was diverted from their homeward bound transit to assist in the search.

The Peleliu deployed two MH-60 helicopters at approximately 5 a.m. to conduct search patterns. One MH-60 helicopter conducted a basket hoist and rescued the crewmember from the sailing vessel.

On scene weather conditions are winds of 25mph and six foot seas.

 

MAN OVERBOARD – Sailor Falls Off Navy Ship USS Essex During RIMPAC Exercises

Yesterday I asked what that strange looking vehicle was that landed on Kawaihae Harbor.  Today, I learned first hand what it was and how it is used as I got invited to go out to the US Navy’s High-Tech Transport for the Marines the USS Essex (LHD-2).

I arrived at Kawaihae Harbor around 9:00 in the morning and there was one Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC) already at the harbor.

A LCAC with deflated pontoons.

It had already unloaded vehicles that were on a convoy up to Pohakuloa Training Grounds.

After a few minutes and talking to a few folks around the area, I learned that another LCAC was coming in with live ammunition.

A 2nd LCAC arrives

These LCAC are amphibious and can go on both water and land!

[youtube=http://youtu.be/to7kQSBDCcw]

Because of the nature of the volatility of ammunition… they really take their time when it comes to loading and unloading it.

After they unloaded the ammunition it was time to go out to the USS Essex which was based about 12 miles off the Big Island.

All Aboard!

After about a 15 minute ride on the LCAC where they allowed me to sit in the bridge, we arrived at the USS Essex and we literally entered the belly of the ship between two pontoons.

Entering!

Everything was going as planned and all of the drivers of the next convoy came down to the vehicle storage space to prepare to load for the next LCAC departure.

Drivers

I had slipped on the deck and cut my hand a little bit so I asked to use the bathroom and was escorted up to the upper deck of the ship.  As we were going back down to the lower part of the ship… all these sailors started running around and then the ship came to a sudden stop!

I heard a bunch of military jargon come on over the ships loudspeaker and then by the reaction of all the sailors on the ship… I knew immediately what happened… as a sailor had fallen overboard.

An opening on the ship

I overheard many sailors running around saying “Man Overboard! Man Overboard”… and I knew that this was the real thing and not just a drill as the look on the face of my escort just turned pale and he didn’t know what to tell me other then yes… someone did just fall overboard.

Another opening in the Essex

They have a very set protocol on what happens when a sailor does fall overboard and I later found out that the last time someone fell overboard on the USS Essex was over 12-13 years ago!  I took this one and only picture because I didn’t know that I wasn’t allowed to take pictures of the incident until after I took this picture.

Smoke flares helps locate folks who have fallen overboard.

The Navy was obviously well prepared for something like this happening because within just a few minutes after he was in the water…. they had a search and rescue helicopter in the air looking for him as well as boats in the water as well.

It took about 10 minutes to locate him in the water and the helicopter circled overhead and then dropped in a specialist to rescue him from the water.

Unfortunately when they brought him back aboard the ship he was on a gurney and it looked like he may have gotten injured.

Getting ready to leave the ship

I’m pretty sure they really didn’t want something like this happening while someone like myself was on the ship… but hey, things happen and I’m glad they were well prepared for the real thing when it did happen.  That is why you train!!!

In the cargo area of the USS Essex

I was only suppose to be on the Essex for a little while… but with the guy falling overboard… I think I was the last thing they were worried about!  After they located the sailor they loaded up another LCAC with equipment and I got on that one for the journey back to the harbor.

Heading home view from above in the bridge of the LCAC

I’d like to thank the US Navy for giving me this chance to check out the operations going on first-hand.  I’d also like to personally thank Lt. Amber Lewis for the hospitality aboard the ship… and for hooking me up w/ another coin for my collection!

US Navy coin #8!

Here is some general information about the USS Essex:

And here is a bit of history about the Essex: