[Sticky] Man overboard
It was great weather on saturday and my brother Gaston and I were going to try to break the small king jinx which has plagued REEL MUSIC for a year and a half. It took a while to get bait with me throwing the net but we left CB with a well full. Within a half hour we released one over thirty at the boat. It hit a rubber pinkish / purple squid on the way out and a naked pogie on the way back in the water. I ended up breaking off the fish on the live bait rod and brought it to the boat with a 650SS Penn.
We the went off shore stopping at live bottoms to see if we could find some more Kings. We would put out a few lines and drop a few bottom baits to try for some bottom fish. We finially got to a great spot with the bottom fishing looking good and mahi mahi all around our live baits. NO SW WINDS ......THIS WAS GOING TO BE GREAT!
We heard REEL DRAG contact the Coast Guard reporting that they had boarded a unmaned center console boat ....in gear with the fishing lines in the water. We imediately brought lines in and determined that we were within 15 minutes of WR 4 and set our course and headed that way. I had Gaston cut off a boat that was heading in to get him to help with the search. The man sat there a minute, then headed on in to the beach???? We had decided to hail ever boat between us and WR 4. The more the better the persons chances. We stopped at one more boat and these guys imediately picked up and helped. We worked the area until 4 when fuel became an issue. We worked our way towards the coast on the MOB's drift path. We did not find him.. NONE OF THE OTHER , MAYBE, FOUR OR FIVE BOATS DID EITHER!Thank GOD someone did.
The coast guard flew a choper out to WR 4 at about 3PM and left. I assume they flew the drift path. We did not see them as we worked the drift path towards shore. I know that the boats anchored and fishing at WR 4 did not stop fishing and help. I assume there were more boats within a ten mile radius that heard the coast guard report, of a person overboard. Why would these people continue their fun time when an emergency where time and maximum help is so important? I will give everyone the benifit of a doubt that they did not have their radio on.
I am ashamed that we as humans are so selfish as to react this way in a crisis situation. I hope we have time to think and react differently next time. If your radio was off....Keep it on!
While I blessed my meal last night and asked God to look after my family and friends, it was with great joy that I was able to thank Him for His assistance in the search and rescue of one thankful fisherman.
I'm not going to try to defend anybody because I wasnt there but I only have one radio and spend most of my time not on 16 I wish there was a way to scan but there is not. Lord knows if there is an emergency in the area I'm there but if you dont know about it what can you do. And for those who know and still choose to ignore, then remember that when you are the one in need...
This is a very sad story with a happy ending. I cant belive people would continue to head in or continue fishing in a area where something like this has happened.
Did anyone go to the local favorite channel and report the Man Overboard?
I would venture to say that very few people fish with their radios completely off, most are monitoring the local favorite channel just to hear who is doing what and to listen to the elusive radio fishing reports. They may turn it down a little when the chatter gets excessive.
I dont know what scares me the most about this incident:
(1) Either alot people on the water off shore really dont know what to do in an emergency situtation like this or:
(2) Alot of people on the water off shore dont really consider that situtation their problem and continue fishing.
Hopefully, all the people that heard that message and were in that area stopped fishing and tried to help. It's amazing that there could possibly be someone out there that just ignored the call for help (I'm talking about the guy that they stopped and tried to get to help but just kept on going in). Hopefully, if he ever gets into trouble out there, others will not do like he did.
We never have our radio on when we go out. If anything, we have our stereo on. I'm glad to hear about all the support these other guys offered to help the overboard individual. I mean, even with radios off, wouldn't it seem odd to look over and see a boat that keeps floating around with no one aboard..? Ya don't need a radio to wonder if anything is wrong with that picture. Any idea what happened, how he fell out the boat??
Glad he's ok!
Here's the article from the Wilmington paper:
We were south of the WR4 sat morning and did not here about this. We were on 6 and sometimes had the electronics box closed to the radio. I wish I knew about it! We left there and went to the Tower sometime around 1 or 2 Oclock. I saw a guy fishing alone catch a king and gaff it. I don't believe it was the same guy. I sure will pay more attention to the radio and monitor 16 from time to time or before I make a move! Glad that he was found & OK!!! As nice as it was I would think that he would have been spotted sooner. The way that some people don't pay attention when there running I figure if I was out there floating around looking for help they would run me over! BE SAFE!
I might add that you are REQUIRED to monitor Channel 16 at all times when under way.
I was on the pond that day and listened to all happen live. HE is a VERY lucky man.
I have 2 radios on my boat. One is for 16 and the other is for whatever else. If you only have one....go read the manual and learn how to use SCAN
I too am guilty of always being on 6 and rarely on 16. Sounds like the excuse I've been looking for to add a second radio (mmm new toy) 😀 .
The first time I took my boat (my old 17 footer) out alone was a 20knot North wind with small craft warnings. Off Oak Island of course the seas were flat as a pancake, Yaupon reef was bouncy but safe. Then I got brave (stupid) and tried to go futher out, yeah right, made it about 2 miles, when I realized I was getting into some deep shit I put a vest on and hauled my skinny but back to the reef. Lost one king and boated a 20 pounder then went in. Definate learning curve associated with fishing/boating alone. As soon as I got back home from that trip I ordered one of the auto inflator SOSpenders vest. Still working on making myself wear it all the time instead of just when I think I need it.
We also dont monitor 16 very much. Is there a radio available with the ability to scan? And as for life vests, we do wear them when we're out.
Every radio I have used both personal and work related have had the capability to scan. As Capt Dave noted read the manual and you will be surprised how easy it is to setup.
Even the cheap handhelds scan.
I would like to say when people are running from spot to spot or heading back to the dock they should pay closer attention to there surroundings. Just last month we were running in from big rck and saw some guys about 25 miles out waving lifejackets and shooting flares at us. They had broken down and said numerous boats had ridden right by them and paid them no attention. We began pulling them in about twenty miles later sea tow meet us 5 miles off the beach to take over.
Interesting to read the comments, which regretfully too easily mirror the times we live in. The water is no place for fools and people who don't want to help. We all have to do our part because what goes around comes around.
That guy was one lucky person, God smiled on him for another day.
Since I boat alone on many occasions I would offer the following tips:
1- don't go out when the weather is bad better safe then sorry.
2-get an auto inflatable PFD and wear it all the time from the dock to the dock. You can drown in your own back yard.
3- make up a tether on your boat. I know it is a pain but it is worth the effort. I have 50 ft of polypropylene line fastened around my seat base, and fastened to my PFD with a carabiner snap clip. The bulk of the line is loosely coiled, held with a rubber band and stored in a small bag behind the seat. It will easily pull out if I go overboard and the bag keeps most of the line out of the way. I fastened the ignition kill switch to the last few feet of the line near the seat base so when the line pulls tight it will kill the engine. The self inflatable should keep me alive if I happen to hit my head as I go over, and the kill switch will make it a lot easier to get back to the boat.
Obviously, having a cable following you around the boat during some fishing action is a pain but with a little thought you can learn to live with it and when you consider what the alternative could be it is a small nuisance. It is a big ocean out there and not everybody is lucky to be found.
like dave i have 2 vhf's and one stays on 16
Good for you though to pull up lines and help search. I too have the same set up with about 40' of rope and a snap that attaches to my belt and the killswitch to the rope.
I can't afford an EPIRB right now, so I rent one... $50 for the week includes shipping to you and back... not bad.....
Lucky Lucky guy though..... I bet he'll make some adjustments to his safety equipment.