Coast Guard medevacs man 70 miles east of Virginia Beach

U.S. Coast Guard medevaced man on a boat. Photo courtesy of Air Station Elizabeth City.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard medevaced a man about 70 miles east of Virginia Beach, Wednesday.

The man was suffering from shortness of breath aboard a fishing boat.

The crew of the fishing boat, Amanda Ashley, contacted Portsmouth Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads watchstanders with a satellite phone at 2:06 a.m., to report the 53-year-old crewman’s urgent issues and request a medevac.

“With the vessel having a satellite phone on board and being that far off shore, the Amanda Ashley was successful in contacting the Coast Guard and getting their crewmember emergency medical care,” said Lt.j.g Anton Mohammed, an operations unit watchstander at Sector Hampton Roads. “When traveling that far off shore, it is important to have additional means of communication to contact the Coast Guard and other emergency services.”

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, hoisted the man aboard and medevaced him to Norfolk Sentara General Hospital.

“The biggest factor was probably the rigging on the boat; it was pretty crazy. For that type of boat, it had more rigging than other trawler type fishing boats,” said Lt. Tyler Monez, the pilot of the helicopter. “The lack of illumination from the moon and stars, combined with overcast clouds, made for challenging visual conditions, even with the use of night vision goggles. We were happy we were able to safely conduct the medevac and get the man to a higher level of care.”

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