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NEWS | Dec. 27, 2023

U.S. Coast Guard aids stranded vessel Rascal off Tanguisson Beach, Guam, on Christmas weekend

By hief Warrant Officer Sara Muir, U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia / Sector Guam

In a successful search and rescue operation executed by U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam and Guam Fire Rescue, the recreational vessel Rascal, with six adults aboard, was safely towed to Hagåtña Boat Basin after being disabled and adrift off Tanguisson Beach, Dec. 23, 2023.

"This case underscores the importance of being prepared and calling for help at the first sign of trouble at sea," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Will Naden, the coxswain of CG 45753. "Our timely response was crucial, but equally important was the crew of Rascal's swift decision to contact us. Navigating through winds of 18-20 knots and 7-foot seas, our team demonstrated skill and coordination, ensuring a safe outcome."

The Joint Rescue Sub-Center watchstanders received the distress call on Saturday morning from the operator of Rascal, a 28-foot Boston Whaler. The watchstanders promptly entered the distress phase of operations, issuing an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast and coordinating the Search and Rescue mission. They also placed the Rascal crew on a 15-minute communications check-in schedule during response. The ready 45-foot Response-Boat Medium CG 45753 crew from Station Apra Harbor launched, while watchstanders also briefed Guam Fire Rescue 2 for assistance.

Despite challenging sea conditions, the CG 45753 crew, departing from Sumay Cove, reached Rascal within an hour of the call. They located the vessel drifting away from the reef, aided by winds and seas. The crew successfully executed a stern tow, with the Rascal arriving safely at Hagåtña Boat Basin, escorted by GFR 2, just over an hour after beginning the tow. A post-rescue boarding confirmed the boaters' compliance with safety measures.

Weather Conditions and Safety Advisory: At the time of the incident, conditions included northeast winds of 18-20 knots, seas up to 7 feet, and visibility around 7 miles with scattered showers. The National Weather Service forecasters issued a high surf and a rip current statement for the area, which will persist through mid-week. Responders continue to advise boaters and beachgoers to exercise caution during this period.

The U.S. Coast Guard commends the crew of Rascal for their quick action and reminds the public to remain vigilant and prepared while at sea, especially during the holiday season when many choose to frequent the waters and beaches.

-USCG-

The U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam team, including Station Apra Harbor, focuses on maritime safety, security, and stewardship in Oceania. With a primary presence in Guam and Saipan and over 300 members across Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the team maintains a strong U.S. presence in the Micronesia sub-region and adjacent areas, closely tied to local communities.

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