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Press Release | April 30, 2023

Coast Guard rescues 3 people from sunken vessel off Dry Tortugas National Park


MIAMI — A Coast Guard Air Station Miami MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew rescued three men, Sunday, after their vessel sank near Dry Tortugas National Park.

The Dolphin helicopter crew arrived on scene at approximately 2 p.m., hoisted the men into the aircraft and transferred them to Key West International Airport in good health.

A good Samaritan contacted Coast Guard Sector Key West watchstanders at approximately 8 a.m. reporting the 45-foot longliner, Mrs. Sandy, was taking on water with three members aboard. 

Sector Key West watchstanders used Mrs. Sandy's emergency indicating radio beacon position to locate the vessel.  

"We're extremely happy Mrs. Sandy crew had an inflatable raft and an EPIRB aboard," said Jonathan Wheatley, an operations unit controller at Sector Key West. "Having the proper safety equipment is often the difference maker between life and death in these situations." 

The Coast Guard reminds all boaters of these important safety tips while enjoying activities on the water:

  • Have proper and unexpired safety equipment
  • File a float plan
  • Check the weather

For more boating safety tips, click here:

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