The U.S. Coast Guard and partner agencies responded to a 37-foot Cape Ann Harbor Cruise vessel taking on water, in the vicinity of Brace Cove, outside of Gloucester Harbor, Saturday.
At 4:34 p.m. LT Saturday, watchstanders from Coast Guard Sector Boston command center received a mayday call from the captain of the 37-foot Cape Ann Harbor Tour boat, King Eider. The captain reported King Eider was taking on water at the rate of 5 gallons per minute with 34 people aboard.
47-foot motor life boat crewmember from station Gloucester observes as the the Coast Guard tows the 37-foot Cape Ann Harbor Tour boat, King Eider to the Gloucester Harbor Master pier following the report of the vessel taking on water near Gloucester Harbor, August 20, 2016. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st class Devan Smith.
Watchstanders immediately sent an urgent marine broadcast for boats in the vicinity of Brace Cove to respond and render aid. The 40-foot charter fishing vessel, Lisa & Jake, was the first on scene at 4:40 p.m. Simultaneously, a Coast Guard 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from from Coast Guard Station Gloucester was diverted, and two Gloucester Harbor Master boats were dispatched. Both arrived on scene at approximately 4:57 p.m. A Massachusetts State Police Boat and a Gloucester Police Department boat also responded to render assistance.
Pumps were engaged onboard King Eider and able to keep pace with the water flooding the vessel. As a preventative measure the Coast Guard crew also placed a high capacity pump aboard. The passengers remained aboard King Eider, and Lisa & Jake towed the Cape Ann Harbor Cruise vessel into Gloucester Harbor. Lisa & Jake and King Eider were escorted by the Station Gloucester 47-foot motor lifeboat crew, the Gloucester Harbor Master boats, Massachusetts State Police Boats and a Gloucester Police Department boat. Inside the harbor, the Coast Guard 47-foot motor lifeboat crew relieved Lisa & Jake and continued to tow King Eider to land.
King Eider moored at the Gloucester Harbor Master pier at 6 p.m. and all passengers are safely ashore. No injuries were reported and the cause of the flooding is undetermined at this time.
“The immediate response of Lisa & Jake to the urgent marine broadcast message was key to the success of this rescue and is a testament to the respect and responsibility among mariners in this area,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Devan Smith, the coxswain of the responding 47-foot motor lifeboat crew.
Smith also credited the teamwork and seamless communication between local agencies and the King Eider for the successful rescue response that assured the passengers of the harbor tour boat made it safely ashore.
Members of the Station Gloucester 47-foot motor life boat crew communicate with passengers on the 37-foot Cape Ann Harbor Tour boat, King Eider during a tow following the report of the vessel taking on water near Gloucester Harbor, August 20, 2016. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st class Devan Smith.