On Thursday night Marine Police rescued two Canaries men whose fishing vessel encountered engine problems while at sea and advised that in such situations, people should reach out to ‘the professionals’.
“What we would have preferred was at the time of the distress they should have called 911 or 999. You don’t need credit on your phone of you are in distress and we want to stress that to members of the public. If you are in distress and you are on a vessel 911, 999. Don’t call five, six, seven persons. You call the professionals and allow us to come and get you,” Marine Police Commander Kentry Frederick told St Lucia Times.
“So it saves the (mobile telephone) battery in the event that you don’t have flares or distress signals on board,” Frederick explained.
He said both men rescued by the Marine Police were in good health and spirits after being adrift for about four hours.
Frederick told St Lucia Times that his unit received information around 8:00 pm about two fishers in distress West of Saint Lucia.
He said the Marine Police contacted the fishers via mobile telephone, although the battery on the men’s phone was dying.
“We were able to work our data in terms of navigation and they were rescued roughly seven nautical miles South West of the Pitons,” Frederick disclosed.
He explained that the men were aboard a regular fishing pirogue.
Frederick said when the Marine Police Unit arrived, two other fishermen in a small boat were trying to assist.
As a result, the Marine Police Commander said his unit decided it was easier to allow the small fishing boat to tow the vessel that was in distress.
The Marine Police supplied an appropriate line and monitored the tow until the distressed vessel reached Canaries.
Frederick revealed that the operation, conducted amid rain and strong winds that restricted visibility, ended around 11:00 pm.
Headline photo: Stock image