Coast Guard Performs Medevac from Shell Drill Ship

The Coast Guard medevaced a crew member from Shell’s Noble Discoverer drill ship in the Norton Sound Wednesday morning. The Noble Discoverer was about 70 miles off the coast of Nome when they called the Coast Guard for help around 4 a.m.

The Noble Discoverer just left Unalaska on Saturday, and it’s on its way to Shell’s drilling prospects in the Chukchi Sea.

The Noble Discoverer reported that a 59-year-old man on their crew was suffering from an irregular heartbeat. The Coast Guard deployed an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew, attached to the cutter Alex Haley, to meet the Noble Discoverer at about 8 a.m. The Dolphin helicopter is participating in the Coast Guard’s Arctic Shield initiative. That program has ramped up the agency’s presence in the Far North in response to increased industrial activity.

The Coast Guard flew the sick man to Nome, where he met a LifeMed air ambulance that took him the rest of the way to Anchorage. Shell spokesman Curtis Smith confirms that the man made it to Providence Hospital safely Wednesday morning. He wouldn’t comment on the man’s current condition, or whether he’ll rejoin the Noble Discoverer crew for the rest of the drilling season.

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