CAPE DISAPPOINTMENT — The Coast Guard rescued a fisherman from the water Tuesday morning after his vessel began taking on water and sank near the Cape Disappointment bar.
Coast Guard Sector Columbia River received a radio mayday call around 1:30 a.m. from a man aboard a 37-foot commercial fishing vessel. A 47-foot motor lifeboat crew and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew responded.
Watchstanders told the fisherman to activate the vessel's emergency radio beacon and light off available flares. The crew of Columbia River Bar Pilot boat Astoria heard the beacon and assisted with the rescue.
The Coast Guard crew arrived at approximately 2 a.m. and passed a dewatering pump to the vessel in an attempt to control the flooding. However, the vessel began taking on more water and the fisherman jumped into the water to escape the sinking vessel.
The Coast Guard recovered the man promptly from the water before taking him to shore.
"The mariner was prepared for an emergency," said crew member Petty Officer 3rd Class Caitlin Maronde. "Having the proper emergency equipment may have saved his life."
Reported debris in the area may still be hazardous to other vessels in the area. Mariners are urged to use caution while crossing near the mouth of the Columbia River.
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