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Coast Guard rescues man from sinking sailboat 140 miles off North Carolina coast

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WILMINGTON, N.C. - A 52-year-old man was rescued from a sinking boat approximately 140 miles from Wilmington, North Carolina on Saturday.

Fifth Coast Guard District watchstanders received an alert at 6:32 p.m. that a man had used his SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger to notify the International Emergency Response Center that his 32-foot Pearson sailboat 'Great Peace' was taking on water.

An HC-120 aircraft crew and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter were dispatched from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City to assist.

When they arrived on scene, the Jayhawk crew hoisted the man from the sailboat and transported him back to Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City.

"The more prepared boaters are, the easier our job becomes when they need our assistance," said Coast Guard Lt. Daniel Reilly, pilot of the Jayhawk helicopter crew. "Because this individual was well-prepared and utilized his satellite GPS messenger right away, we were able to get to him in time."