Four boaters were rescued by the Coast Guard after their vessel ran aground near the jetties on the southern portion of the Charleston Harbor entrance on Monday April 7, 2008.
Anne Sinkinson, 52, from Gloucester, Mass., Elizabeth Sinkinson, 27, of Charleston, and Mary Taylor, 55, from Tennington, N.J., were on a 23-foot Regulator center console boat piloted by C. Lucas Drake, 43, of Charleston when the vessel ran aground on a sandbar near the south jetties. The Vessel was taking on water in the surf as the crashing waves pounded the vessel.
The four were reported to have left the Carolina Yacht Club earlier in the day, but spotted traveling on full plane towards Ft. Sumter but on the wrong side of the jetties.
A nearby boater called Coast Guard Sector Charleston for assistance for the four boaters on the foundering vessel. Sector launched a rescue boat from Station Charleston and a rescue helicopter from Air Facility Charleston to assist the boaters. A nearby Towboat US salvage vessel joined in the effort.
The 23-foot vessel was in water too shallow for the rescue or salvage boats to get to safely. The four were having difficulty getting to their lifejackets, so the aircrew was brought in to hoist the four to safety.
Video USCG Sector Charleston
The helicopter's rescue swimmer jumped into the harbor channel near the vessel and swam to the grounded vessel. Then one-by-one the flight mechanic in the helicopter and the rescue swimmer hoisted the four to the helicopter using a hoist basket.
The four were hoisted to safety and brought to Air Facility Charleston at Charleston Executive Airport on Johns Island, S.C. The four boaters were not injured during the incident. The boat however was a total loss after completely capsizing during the salvage effort which took until 11:00 PM Monday night.
As with "Water Bug" grounding a few weeks ago a lack of "local knowledge" combined with poor seamanship nearly caused a fatal incident.
Major Props and Bravo Zulu to the Sector Charleston for saving some not so bright boaters.