The Coast Guard and the crew of the Navy destroyer USS Cole rescued three people Sunday, Nov. 10, from the disabled 38-foot sailboat Wings approximately 210 miles offshore of North Carolina in the Atlantic Ocean.
Coast Guard Fifth District watchstanders initially received a call Friday from a commercial towing company, which was relaying a request for assistance via a satellite phone on behalf of the crew of the Wing.
The crew of the Wing reported they were not in distress and had plenty of provisions aboard but had lost their rudder.
At approximately 8 a.m. Sunday, the crew of the Wings contacted Coast Guard watchstanders to discuss options, and in light of the worsening weather, the decision was made to conduct a rescue.
Watchstanders launched crews aboard an HC-130 Hercules airplane and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C.
The watchstanders also contacted the Navy, which diverted the USS Cole toward the location of the Wings.
At approximately 10 a.m., the Jayhawk crew hoisted the three people from the Wings and dropped them off on the Cole. The Jayhawk crew then flew to another distress call that was determined to be a non-distress situation.
Returning to the Cole, the Jayhawk retrieved the three rescued people and took them to Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C.
There are no reports of injuries.
According to the website for the Salty Dawg Rally, the Wings was participating in the sailing event. On Thursday night and Friday, the Coast Guard assisted five sailboats in distress, four of which were part of the rally during which boats travel from Virginia to the British Virgin Island or the Bahamas.
Click here to see the video from the U.S. Coast Guard.