Barbara HeinsThis article is written by
Three boaters were rescued Sunday as the motor boat they were aboard
began to sink in the waters off Great Captain's Island in Greenwich.
a statement released late Sunday, Greenwich Police said marine units
from Greenwich, Westchester County, Rye and the United States Coast
Guard (USCG), responded to an area south of Great
Captain’s Island on a report of a sinking vessel, at about 8:30 a.m.
Sept. 29. A Westchester County Police helicopter unit also responded.
According to Greenwich Police, "There were three persons on the vessel at the time
it began to sink. Wearing life jackets, two individuals entered the water
and swam to the south shore of Great Captain’s Island. The owner remained with
the stricken vessel." Great Captain's Island is a 17-acre tract about a mile offshore that is home to Greenwich's lighthouse.
"Westchester County PD aviation unit landed on the north
shore of Great Captain’s Island to assess the individuals that had reached
shore. The owner of the vessel was transferred aboard the Westchester County PD
Marine Unit," according to the police statement. Police did not say how far the boaters swam to reach shore.
The trio, whose identities and hometowns, were not released by police, were evaluated by a Greenwich EMS Marine
Paramedic that was onboard the Greenwich Police boat before being brought to the Greenwich Police dock in Greenwich Harbor.
Vessel was dewatered and towed by a private salvage
company, according to police. Details on the size of the motor boat, its
homeport or its registered owner were not immediately available.
incident is being investigated by the Greenwich Police Marine Section
which has initially determined "It appears at this time that the vessel
took on water because the two main through hull bolts securing the
transmission to the engine, failed." Police said there doesn't appear to
be any violations on the part of the boaters.
Greenwich Police spokesman Lt. Kraig Gray indicated there was some
confusion because the boaters initially used a cell phone to call for
help rather than the marine emergency VHF Channel 16.
"As things progressed from bad to worse, a mayday was put out on the
wrong channel, channel 8. All boaters are reminded that VHF channel 16
is the designated emergency channel that is monitored by police
departments and the USCG. All calls for help or assistance should be
initiated on VHF channel 16 and can be switched to a non priority
channel after this initial communication."