itCG-2008 boating stats, fisheries enforcement, 14 people rescued in three SAR cases

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  • Coast Guard just published the 2008 boating statistics report yesterday. Unfortunately, the report shows a rise in boating fatalities from 2007. About two-thirds of the victims drowned and 90 percent of those victims were not wearing a life jacket. Alcohol is a leading contributing factor in 17 percent of the deaths. Other top factors contributing to boating accidents include operator inattention, careless or reckless operation, no proper lookout, operator inexperience, and passenger or skier behavior.
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  • When Coast Guard Cutter Block Island found two fishing vessels operating in a protected area about 55 miles off the coast of North Carolina, the crew worked with National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to seize the 2,000 pounds of fish found onboard and escort the boats back to shore. NOAA is investigating the incident.
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  • When a small boat with seven people onboard capsized about 27 miles off the coast of Mississippi, a nearby Good Samaritan responded and called the Coast Guard for help. The Good Sam rescued four of the people from the water and a Coast Guard helicopter rescued two more from a nearby oil rig. Tragically, the seventh passenger was found inside the boat’s pilot house when it was salvaged.
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  • A family practicing sailing on Lake Michigan Tuesday night ended up being rescued by the Coast Guard. The boat capsized several times as the family was struggling to keep it upright. Someone on shore who was watching the evolution called 911. The four people onboard were wearing life jackets and were not injured.
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  • Coast Guard Station Atlantic City and Sea Tow rescued four people from a life raft off the coast of New Jersey yesterday. They crew radioed a distress call when their boat starting taking on water.
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