Coast Guard rescues 3 men, dog after their fishing boat ran aground near Whittier

a grounded fishing vessel
A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 aircrew rescued three men and one dog after their boat ran aground on Esther Island on Monday. (Petty Officer 3rd Class Ian Grey/U.S. Coast Guard District 17)

The U.S. Coast Guard rescued three men and a dog on Monday after their boat ran aground on Esther Island near Whittier. No injuries were reported. The status of the vessel is still unknown.

According to a new release, the 45-foot F/V Privateer was hitting rocks near the island Monday as wind gusts were up to 60 knots in rough seas with low visibility. The crew put on survival suits and were preparing to abandon ship.

The Coast Guard said two good Samaritan vessels and a Whittier Sea Tow responded to a distress call placed around noon and were attempting to help when the Coast Guard arrived.

Petty Officer Melissa McKenzie, a public information officer for the Coast Guard, said a helicopter and a plane were dispatched from Kodiak to respond to the emergency.

“The helicopter crew hoisted the three men as well as a dog,” she said. “They were all stranded on rocks in high wind conditions and then all three survivors and the dog were then safely transported to emergency medical services in Anchorage.”

Petty Officer Dante Corradi, a Coast Guard watchstander, thanked the good Samaritans for their help. 

“It’s incredible these men and the dog made it out okay and the fact that multiple good Samaritans were ready to assist made a huge difference in the outcome of this rescue,” he said.

Southcentral Alaska waters continued to be hit with gale-force conditions Tuesday night.

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