Coast Guard rescues three from sinking fishing boat

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NEAH BAY — Three commercial fishermen were plucked from a sinking fishing boat by Coast Guard rescuers early Wednesday morning after their boat ran aground near Neah Bay.

The 37-foot Karanna ran aground on the Chibahdehl Rocks about 4 miles west of Neah Bay.

The operator of the boat told Coast Guard members that he had fallen asleep before the boat ran aground.

The Coast Guard launched a 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from Station Neah Bay and an MH-65C Dolphin helicopter and crew from Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles after receiving a report that the Karanna was taking on water at 3:35 a.m.

The Karanna was in such shallow water that the motor lifeboat crew could not pull alongside it, but the three fishermen were able to swim to the lifeboat and were pulled safely onboard.

Examined on shore

After examination by emergency medical technicians on shore, they were discharged, the Coast Guard said.

The Coast Guard did not identify the fishermen.

“I cannot emphasize enough the importance of standing a taut and vigilant watch when you are under way,” said Capt. Scott Ferguson, commander of Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound.

Efforts to salvage the submerged Karanna late Wednesday morning were called off because the seas were too rough, said Petty Officer Nathan Bradshaw, a Coast Guard public information officer.

“The boat is within 20 yards of a cliff face,” said Bradshaw.

Efforts to resume

Salvage efforts will resume once the seas are calmer, he said.

Bradshaw said the owner of the Karanna, which was built in 1950, is responsible for the cost of salvaging the vessel.

The registered owner is Edith Johnston of Neah Bay, according to

Last modified: May 09. 2012 5:12PM
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