A Coast Guard Station Islamorada 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew pulls a man toward the boat near Key Largo on Feb. 21, 2019. (Coast Guard Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Shortes)

Coast Guard Rescue Contains Reminder on Proper Communications Gear

"Thanks to the proper use of the VHF-FM radio, we were able to have assets on scene within 30 minutes of getting the distress call," said Petty Officer 1st Class Richard Steidell. "Having the right communications equipment often plays a big part in successful rescue missions."

U.S. Coast Guard personnel rescued two people from a sinking vessel Feb. 21 approximately 3 miles east of Key Largo, Fla. The two were identified as Eric Kample, 40, and Robert Pflugh, 56.

At approximately 4 a.m., Coast Guard Sector Key West received a distress call from the crew of the 36-foot sailing vessel No Worries via VHF-FM radio channel 16. The mariners said they were taking on water and on the verge of capsizing. Watchstanders launched a Coast Guard Air Station Miami MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew and Coast Guard Station Islamorada 45-foot Response Boat—Medium crew to the scene to assist.

The helicopter crew hoisted one individual and the other was rescued by the boat's crew. Both were transferred to Coast Guard facilities with no reported injuries.

"Thanks to the proper use of the VHF-FM radio, we were able to have assets on scene within 30 minutes of getting the distress call," said Petty Officer 1st Class Richard Steidell. "Having the right communications equipment often plays a big part in successful rescue missions."

(Coast Guard Photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Shortes)

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