Saturday, July 20, 2024
75.9 F
Kilmarnock

Smith Point Sea Rescue Report

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

June 3: At 1:21 p.m., the Northumberland County Sheriff’s Office (NCSO) reported the sighting of a boat on fire on the Potomac River. Rescue II dispatched from Olverson’s Marina at 1:50 p.m. with a crew of two to search and assist. At the same time, another SPSR member drove to Lewisetta Marina to provide on-scene guidance. At 2:05 p.m., the SPSR member at Lewisetta reported there was no fire. When Rescue II reached the boat, its owner reported that malfunctioning engines had caused intermittent excessive plumes of black smoke. Time on call: 2 hours. 

At 4:10 p.m., NCSO reported a disabled johnboat with two adults and one child aboard near Wilkins Creek in the Yeocomico. Rescue II departed Olverson’s with a crew of three. While Rescue II was on route to the johnboat, the boaters in distress called to report they had restarted their engine and were headed to Kinsale. Because the wind had risen to 16-18 knots, gusting over 20, Rescue II followed the johnboat to ensure the boaters reached Kinsale safely. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

June 4: At 12:15 p.m., SPSR received a report that a pontoon boat needed help on the Potomac River. Rescue I departed Reedville at 12:45 p.m. with a crew of four and at 1:45 p.m. located a 24-foot pontoon boat beached hard aground near Vir-Mar Beach. SPSR passed a towline to a swimmer and after several attempts—and a broken towline—Rescue I pulled the boat clear and then returned to Reedville. Time on call: 3 hours.

June 6: At 4:40 p.m., SPSR received a call from NCSO that a boat was “stuck on a sandbar near Smith Point heading towards Colonial Beach.” Rescue I responded from Reedville with a crew of five and traveled along the Potomac shore north of Smith Point, looking for the vessel. 

The crew eventually located a small construction barge with an excavator on it, hard aground near Hacks Creek. Rescue I approached as close as possible in the extremely shallow water and passed a towline to a swimmer from the barge. After Rescue I pulled at full power for 20 minutes while the excavator pushed off the bottom—both with no success—the barge owner gave up the effort and cast off the towline. Rescue I returned to Reedville after recommending the owner contact a salvage company for further help. Total time 2.75 hours.

June 15: At 11:15 a.m., SPSR received a call for help from a disabled 37-foot tugboat-style trawler. Rescue I dispatched at 11:35 a.m. with a crew of four, including a new member in training, and located the vessel. After a towline was secured, Rescue I slowly towed the trawler to Tiffany Yachts for repairs. Time on call: 2.75 hours.

At 4:30 p.m., SPSR received a call that an inboard-outboard boat was caught up in a “pot” of some type in the Little Wicomico. SPSR responded with a member’s personal shallow draft skiff to assist. The member noted the boat was caught in oyster cages, and so immediately called the Little Wicomico Oyster Company. An employee of the company quickly responded to the scene and helped free the boat. The SPSR member then used his skiff to tow the boat to the owner’s pier for inspection. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

July 3: At 11:27 a.m., NCSO notified SPSR that a boat was taking on water near Sandy Point. Rescue I departed Reedville at noon with a crew of five and three dewatering pumps, arriving on scene at 12:20 p.m. The distressed vessel, a 20-foot Grady-White, was still taking on water and in danger of sinking. The crew used Rescue I’s high-capacity onboard water pump to de-water the boat, and then towed it to Shell Landing to be loaded on the owner’s trailer. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

Smith Point Sea Rescue is a volunteer rescue unit serving boaters from Coles Point to the mouth of the Potomac River, south to the Rappahannock River and across the Chesapeake Bay to Smith and Tangier islands. It receives no regular governmental monetary support, depending solely on donations.

Smith Point Sea Rescue does not charge for its services and can be reached on VHF channel 16 or at 911. Rescue 1 and Rescue Skiff A are based in Reedville, with Rescue 2 and Rescue Skiff B on Lodge Creek near Callao.

Smith Point Sea Rescue Report

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

June 3: At 1:21 p.m., the Northumberland County Sheriff’s Office (NCSO) reported the sighting of a boat on fire on the Potomac River. Rescue II dispatched from Olverson’s Marina at 1:50 p.m. with a crew of two to search and assist. At the same time, another SPSR member drove to Lewisetta Marina to provide on-scene guidance. At 2:05 p.m., the SPSR member at Lewisetta reported there was no fire. When Rescue II reached the boat, its owner reported that malfunctioning engines had caused intermittent excessive plumes of black smoke. Time on call: 2 hours.

At 4:10 p.m., NCSO reported a disabled johnboat with two adults and one child aboard near Wilkins Creek in the Yeocomico. Rescue II departed Olverson’s with a crew of three. While Rescue II was on route to the johnboat, the boaters in distress called to report they had restarted their engine and were headed to Kinsale. Because the wind had risen to 16-18 knots, gusting over 20, Rescue II followed the johnboat to ensure the boaters reached Kinsale safely. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

June 4: At 12:15 p.m., SPSR received a report that a pontoon boat needed help on the Potomac River. Rescue I departed Reedville at 12:45 p.m. with a crew of four and at 1:45 p.m. located a 24-foot pontoon boat beached hard aground near Vir-Mar Beach. SPSR passed a towline to a swimmer and after several attempts—and a broken towline—Rescue I pulled the boat clear and then returned to Reedville. Time on call: 3 hours.

June 6: At 4:40 p.m., SPSR received a call from NCSO that a boat was “stuck on a sandbar near Smith Point heading towards Colonial Beach.” Rescue I responded from Reedville with a crew of five and traveled along the Potomac shore north of Smith Point, looking for the vessel.

The crew eventually located a small construction barge with an excavator on it, hard aground near Hacks Creek. Rescue I approached as close as possible in the extremely shallow water and passed a towline to a swimmer from the barge. After Rescue I pulled at full power for 20 minutes while the excavator pushed off the bottom—both with no success—the barge owner gave up the effort and cast off the towline. Rescue I returned to Reedville after recommending the owner contact a salvage company for further help. Total time 2.75 hours.

June 15: At 11:15 a.m., SPSR received a call for help from a disabled 37-foot tugboat-style trawler. Rescue I dispatched at 11:35 a.m. with a crew of four, including a new member in training, and located the vessel. After a towline was secured, Rescue I slowly towed the trawler to Tiffany Yachts for repairs. Time on call: 2.75 hours.

At 4:30 p.m., SPSR received a call that an inboard-outboard boat was caught up in a “pot” of some type in the Little Wicomico. SPSR responded with a member’s personal shallow draft skiff to assist. The member noted the boat was caught in oyster cages, and so immediately called the Little Wicomico Oyster Company. An employee of the company quickly responded to the scene and helped free the boat. The SPSR member then used his skiff to tow the boat to the owner’s pier for inspection. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

July 3: At 11:27 a.m., NCSO notified SPSR that a boat was taking on water near Sandy Point. Rescue I departed Reedville at noon with a crew of five and three dewatering pumps, arriving on scene at 12:20 p.m. The distressed vessel, a 20-foot Grady-White, was still taking on water and in danger of sinking. The crew used Rescue I’s high-capacity onboard water pump to de-water the boat, and then towed it to Shell Landing to be loaded on the owner’s trailer. Time on call: 1.5 hours.

Smith Point Sea Rescue is a volunteer rescue unit serving boaters from Coles Point to the mouth of the Potomac River, south to the Rappahannock River and across the Chesapeake Bay to Smith and Tangier islands. It receives no regular governmental monetary support, depending solely on donations.

Smith Point Sea Rescue does not charge for its services and can be reached on VHF channel 16 or at 911. Rescue 1 and Rescue Skiff A are based in Reedville, with Rescue 2 and Rescue Skiff B on Lodge Creek near Callao.

Follow us on Social Media

Your Local Weather

Kilmarnock
broken clouds
75.9 ° F
77.7 °
72.7 °
92 %
1.3mph
75 %
Sat
76 °
Sun
86 °
Mon
78 °
Tue
90 °
Wed
85 °