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Smith Point Sea Rescue Report

Smith Point Sea Rescue (SPSR) editor Dan Morissette recently reported crews responded to the following calls for assistance.

May 5: At 8:15 a.m., Rescue I and a crew of five towed a disabled Shamrock powerboat for repairs at Glebe Point. On the return trip, Rescue I encountered a salvage barge working to raise a sunken boat from an April 1 rescue of eight persons near Buoy 62 in mid-Bay. Total time on call: 3.0 hours.

At 1:30 p.m., a crew of five on Rescue I responded to a call for assistance from a boat disabled due to an overheated engine north of Buoy 65, near Point Lookout. Three persons were on board. Rescue I arrived on the scene at 2:55 p.m. and towed the 34-foot MJM powerboat to Tiffany Yachts for repairs. Time on call: 5.5 hours.

May 15: At 10:10 a.m., an SPSR member was called by the owner of a 50-foot Beneteau sailboat to report his engine had overheated near Krentz Marina in the Yeocomico River while underway to Tiffany Yachts for repairs. The owner had already arranged with a commercial operator for a tow the following day but requested that Sea Rescue assist him and his crew of two returning to his dock.

At 10:50 a.m., Rescue II with a crew of two brought the three men back to the dock. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

May 19: At 8:19 a.m., Northumberland County Sheriff’s Office (NCSO) notified SPSR that the owner of a 24-foot Carolina Skiff at Smith Point Light was unable to start his boat. Rescue I with a crew of three launched at 8:30 a.m. and approached the Light, where the boat was found tied up. Due to wind and a rough sea, the SPSR captain determined that assistance could not be rendered without risk of severe damage to the skiff.

After notifying the skiff’s owner, who also was the owner of the lighthouse, Rescue I returned to its slip at 9:30 a.m. At 4 p.m., the sea having calmed, Rescue I returned to the lighthouse and left a battery in the skiff for the owner to use to start it. Rescue I then returned to its slip at 5:27 p.m. Total time on call for both missions: 3 hours.

May 20: At 3 p.m., SPSR received a call that a 25-foot Parker was caught in oyster cages in Ellyson Creek off the Little Wicomico. Rescue III responded with a crew of four to find the Parker badly entangled. Rescue III approached cautiously but also became entangled very near the Parker.

Rescue III called for help and Rescue I arrived but stood off until a local waterman arrived with a diver onboard who freed both boats. The Parker continued its journey while Rescue III is towed by Rescue I back to Smith Point Marina for haul out and repairs to its running gear.

“Many thanks to Myles Cockrell and Brandon the diver for coming to our rescue,” said Morissette. Time on call: 3 hours.

May 21: At 9:30 a.m., the owner of the skiff from the May 19 missions called the SPSR captain directly to report that his unoccupied skiff had broken free from its mooring at the lighthouse and was floating south in the Chesapeake Bay. At 9:50 a.m., Rescue I began a search for the skiff, with grappling hooks aboard if needed. The captain of Rescue I also broadcast a request for other vessels in the area to be on the lookout for the skiff.

Eventually, the captain of sailboat Kaja called Rescue I to report that he had located the skiff near Buoy 63 adjacent to the main shipping channel and would circle it until Rescue I arrived. Rescue I redirected to the Buoy 63 location and then towed the skiff to Smith Point Marina. SPSR thanks Kaja’s captain for his assistance. Time on call: 3 hours.

May 25: At 9 a.m., NCSO notified SPSR that a 20-foot pontoon boat had come loose from its dock and was adrift in Glebe Creek. Rescue II responded with a crew of four and found the boat at the head of Glebe Creek, in water too shallow for Rescue II to approach. The owner of the boat also had a paddle boat, so an SPSR crew member attached the tow line to it and paddled 200 feet across the creek and secured the line to the pontoon boat. The SPSR crew on shore pulled the pontoon boat back across the creek and moored it in its slip. Time on call: 2.5 hours.

Smith Point Sea Rescue is an all-volunteer rescue unit that serves boaters from Coles Point to the mouth of the Potomac River, across the Chesapeake Bay to Smith and Tangier islands, and south to the Rappahannock River. The organization receives no regular governmental monetary support and depends solely on donations.

Smith Point Sea Rescue does not charge for its services and can be reached on VHF channel 16 or by calling 911. Rescue I and Rescue Skiff A are based in Reedville, Rescue II and Rescue Skiff B on Lodge Creek near Callao.

Rappahannock Record Staff
Rappahannock Record Staffhttp://www.rrecord.com
From the Rappahannock Record news team

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