HONOLULU – On Feb. 13th, 2023, the Coast Guard Cutter Oliver Berry, a 154-foot Fast Response Cutter was tasked with assisting the vessel Eden Bound, a 58-foot long pleasure craft adrift 230 nautical miles southwest of Oahu.
The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Joseph Gerzcak arrived on scene on Feb. 12th to provide coverage, but the 10-foot sea state prohibited safe embarkation for the Rescue and Assistance team. Oliver Berry arrived on scene at 5:00 a.m. on Feb. 14th and relieved the Joseph Gerzcak as the on-scene asset, allowing the Joseph Gerzcak to return to homeport following their three-week patrol.
By 10:00 a.m., on Feb. 14th, the sea state had calmed down to eight-foot seas with a reduction in winds. Oliver Berry launched their small boat, and embarked a two person R&A team to determine the nature of the casualty and to provide assistance during a 48-hour tow. Working with the master of Eden Bound, the R&A team determined that the vessel had only 40 gallons of fuel left, which the master was saving for the ship’s generator.
At 12:00 p.m., the Oliver Berry completed preparations to place Eden Bound in tow and approached the adrift vessel in eight-foot seas. Passing the vessel close aboard, the crew sent a heaving line to the R&A team onboard, allowing the R&A team to connect the tow bridle to Eden Bound. Oliver Berry established the tow and proceeded northeast towards Honolulu at six knots.
The Oliver Berry towed Eden Bound to Kewalo Basin Harbor, arriving at 8:00 a.m. on Feb. 16th. The Oliver Berry disconnected the tow and the master used their remaining fuel to safely transit into the harbor. A Coast Guard Station Honolulu Response Boat Medium was on scene to transfer the R&A team back to the Oliver Berry and to escort Eden Bound into the harbor.
“The crew performed admirably, safely establishing a tow in heavy seas and carefully monitoring the vessel under tow for nearly two full days. I am grateful for our crew’s can-do attitude and diligence in preserving life and property,” said LCDR Micah Howell, commanding officer of the Oliver Berry. “We work hard to maintain the cutter and train to proficiently respond to search and rescue cases just like this one.”
The Oliver Berry will continue its three-week patrol around the main Hawaiian Islands, conducting search and rescue and maritime law enforcement. The Oliver Berry is one of three highly capable FRCs stationed in Honolulu. Their crews work in conjunction with Coast Guard Sector Honolulu and Coast Guard Air Station Barber’s Point to provide year round search and rescue coverage around the main Hawaiian Islands.
For more information on boating safety, visit: www.uscgboating.org.