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Rescues, Marine Inspections Keep Coast Guard Busy

A Coast Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew escorts the commercial passenger vessel Maka Koa back to port five miles south of Maalaea, Maui, Aug. 14, 2016. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Rob Lester)
A Coast Guard Station Maui 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew escorts the commercial passenger vessel Maka Koa back to port five miles south of Maalaea, Maui, Aug. 14, 2016. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Rob Lester)

Rescues and at sea-boardings of two commercial fishing boats kept the Coast Guard busy over the weekend.

On Sunday, Coast Guard crews came to the aid of a 43-foot boat taking on water off Maui.

A 45-foot response boat from Maui responded to the distress call five miles south of Maalaea.

The crew of the Maka Koa had stemmed the leak by the time the Coast Guard arrived but accepted a tow back to port.

It was determined the vessel was taking on water around the propeller shaft, which was removed.

"The Maka Koa crew was very professional and effective in their casualty response," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Rob Lester, a crewman aboard the Maui response boat. "Upon arrival we confirmed the vessel's installed bilge pumps were keeping up with the leak and provided a standby until they reached port. We applaud the operators quick action identifying the problem and alerting us to what could have become a more severe case."

Coast Guard crews responded to eight search and rescue and marine safety cases between Friday and Sunday.

On Friday, the crew of the cutter Galveston Island boarded the commercial fishing vessel Blue Sky a mile south of Honolulu. The cutter crew found "extremely hazardous conditions and safety violations" aboard the boat and escorted it back to the Galveston Island crew terminated to Pier 38 in Honolulu.

The violations weren't specified.

The same thing happened Saturday with the commercial fishing vessel Jennifer Lynn near Honolulu.

Also, Coast Guard marine investigators in Maui are responding to the reported death of a diver Friday. The operator of a commercial vessel notified the Coast Guard of the incident involving a middle-aged man who became distressed while conducting a night dive off the Big Island.

The crew of the vessel recovered the man and contacted emergency medical services personnel, who met them at Honokohau Marina. He was transferred to Kona Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

On Sunday, the Coast Guard got word of a 60-year-old Japanese citizen who experienced symptoms of a heart attack while snorkeling off a commercial vessel on the west side of Oahu. The man was transferred to shore and met by emergency medical personnel who took him to the Queen's Medical Center.

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