Everyone knows that foul weather is often the precursor to an amazing Coast Guard search and rescue story but every once in a while a particular case puts that into perspective. Take yesterday’s rescue of an injured fisherman nearly 100-miles off the coast of Adak, Alaska.
Two helicopters and an airplane were deployed from Air Station Kodiak Tuesday evening in response to a distress call from a trawler with a crewman who was injured when fish processing machine malfunctioned and lacerated the man’s wrist. Despite blizzard conditions, the crews launched and attempted to medevac the injured crew member. After arriving on scene, conditions were simply too dangerous to perform a hoist and the aircrews were forced to turn back.
Of course, the story doesn’t end there. One of the helicopter crews launched again the next morning despite continuing blizzard conditions – blowing snow, visibility of one-quarter mile, an air temperature in the low 30s, and 30 to 45 mile-per-hour winds. This time the aircrew was able to medevac the injured man. They delivered him to a medical clinic in Adak and he was airlifted to Anchorage for further treatment.
Unfortunately, we currently don’t have photos or video of this amazing rescue, but if they become available you’ll be able to see it here on Coast Guard Compass. In the meantime, click here to read more about the case.
UPDATE: As promised, click here to view hoist cam video of the medevac.