Two Fishermen Rescued from Back Bay When Boat Overturns

Monday, March 05, 2012

At 12:33 p.m., Virginia Beach 911 received a call for two fishermen whose boat had overturned in Back Bay. Two Virginia Beach Fire Department fire boats (Zodiacs) and one Department of EMS boat responded to the scene. When the fire boats arrived on scene, they found two fishermen clinging to the bottom of their overturned boat. The boat was a 17-foot fishing boat that got entangled in a fishing net and overturned. Neither boater was wearing a personal flotation device or proper cold weather survival suits.

Fortunately, they had a working cell phone and were able to call for help. The boaters were rescued by the Fire Boats at 1:22 p.m. and transported to shore where both fishermen were turned over to EMS crews.  One patient was transported to a local hospital for treatment of hypothermia and the other patient refused transport.  The water temperature in Back Bay was 49 degrees. Luckily for the fishermen, the water depth was only four to five feet deep.

The United States Coast Guard sent a helicopter from Elizabeth City, which aided in the search and returned to base after the patients were safely on shore.  The Virginia Police Department Marine Team is investigating the accident.

As a safety reminder, all boaters should wear personal flotation devices and wear cold weather survival suits when the water temperature is below 60 degrees.