12 boaters rescued from 3 capsized boats off coast of Galveston

June 3, 2013 5:09:30 AM PDT
Severe weather created a problem for boaters and rescue crews off the coast of Galveston on Sunday morning.

According to officials, 12 boaters were rescued by the Galveston Beach Patrol and the U.S. Coast Guard from three separate vessels after they capsized in choppy waters and high winds.

The boaters were able to climb onto jetties and stay there until crews arrived on jet skis to take them to a nearby USCG response boat.

No injuries were reported.

The rescues on Sunday didn't end there. An additional five lives were saved or assisted on Sunday.

Coast Guard officials said Air Station Houston helicopter crews hoisted a fisherman to safety after he fell into the water 11 miles off Galveston, Station Freeport rescued a kayaker who was offset by weather off Surfside beach in Freeport and a good Samaritan assisted Station Sabine Pass in rescuing three boaters 23 miles southeast of Sabine, after their boat starting taking on water.

"Today we assisted 17 mariners who were first hand witness to the devastating effects of strong winds and heavy rains," said USCG Lt. Matthew J. Walter, a command duty officer at Coast Guard Sector Houston/Galveston. "I strongly urge all mariners to check the weather regularly before departing the dock and while enjoying themselves on the water. Severe weather can arise quickly and take even the most prepared mariners off guard."

The Coast Guard reminds all boaters and mariners to do the following before heading out on the water:

  • Wear a life jacket at all times
  • File a float plan
  • Check the weather prior to departing the dock
  • Have a marine band radio and visual distress signals on board
  • Have a registered 406MHz Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon
  • Have a Personal Locator Beacon
  • Do not boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

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