On Tuesday night, a Coast Guard aircrew worked through challenging conditions to hoist three adults and one child to safety from a cliffside near Cape Flattery, Washington.
Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound received a distress call on VHF from the captain of a disabled boat at about 2200 hours. The captain reported that they were beginning to drift near cliffs between Tatoosh Island and Cape Flattery, the rocky point at the entrance to the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
A Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles MH-65 helicopter crew launched to the scene and a Coast Guard Station Neah Bay lifeboat crew diverted to meet them. The boatcrew arrived at 2230 hours, and they found winds of about 20 mph and seas of about six feet on scene. However, they were unable to get close enough to the stricken vessel. All four passengers were wearing life jackets and climbed onto a ledge before their boat capsized at about 2245 hours.
At 2300, the aircrew arrived on scene. The rescue swimmer was deployed to hoist the individuals one by one into the helicopter.
After hoisting the first two people, the helicopter crew flew to Station Neah Bay to drop the survivors off. Around midnight, the remaining individuals were hoisted and brought safely to Neah Bay. No injuries were reported.
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