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Fisherman trapped under water rescued near Smith Island

Charles Hays, RCM-SAR 64 and Coast Guard vessels responded to the mayday call to save a life
RCM-SAR 64 responded to a Mayday call near Smith Island on March 26 with the Bravo-Geoff Gould. (RCM-SAR 64 photo)

Three rescue vessels responded to a mayday call after a crab fisherman got caught in his gear and was pulled under water.

The call went out at 12:20 p.m., on Tuesday, March 27 near Smith Island. The fisherman was under 10 metres of water for 3-4 minutes. Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue Station 64 (RCM-SAR 64) said in a post that “his crew reacted quickly and recovered by pulling back on ground line.”

Five minutes after the mayday call went out, RCM-SAR 64 dispatched three crew members on board the Bravo-Geoff Gould and within 14 minutes they were on the scene.

READ MORE: Marine search and rescue assists coast guard in medical emergency

The Charles Hays, a Prince Rupert Port Authority patrol vessel, was already there, and the Canadian Coast Guard arrived to assist as well. The fisherman was unresponsive when he was brought on board.

“The patient was given first aid and whisked to port side where there met the BC EHS [Emergency Health Services] and they got him to the hospital,” said Paul Cumberland, director of administration RCM-SAR.

RCM-SAR 64 said in the post that crew visited the patient at 5 p.m. at the Prince Rupert Regional Hospital and he was doing much better.

“It was a good bit of cooperation with vessel of opportunity [Charles Hays], Coast Guard, RCM-SAR all looking after the patient. I think it was a great effort on everybody’s part,” Cumberland said.

READ MORE: Heart of Our City, Geoff Gould

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Shannon Lough | Editor
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