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Shipwreck In Bahamas (Jan 3, 2002)

On January 3, 2002, at 20:10z, the net was contacted by SV Wind Walker, Capt. Tom. Tom reported that he was just south of Florida and that he was in contact with SV Silent Flight, that was just off the coast of Little Inagua, in the Bahamas and operating on a marine frequency.

SV Silent Flight was reporting a shipwreck at 21.26N x 073.00W and that there were a "couple of dozen" people on the shore. It was unknown at this time if there were others still onboard or not.

SV Wind Walker maintained the relay of information to and from the Silent Flight while the USCG were notified. A net control station was also able to contact the Silent Flight directly on marine SSB, as a second source of information.

A USCG helicopter and Bahamian assets were dispatched to the area and, by 21:24z, the net was advised that the helicopter was on the scene of the wreck and the situation was under control.

It was later learned that the persons involved were refugees from Haiti and that there may have been some fatalities as a result of their vessel sinking. It was also learned that the vessel actually sunk on or around December 21, 2001 and that the people had been on the island for an extended period of time without food or water.

As a result of the quick action taken by the net, the shipwrecked people were evacuated from the island and received the medical assistance they required.