The Coast Guard terminated the voyage of a 48-foot tuna-fishing boat approximately 150 miles east of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, on Wednesday, October 20, 2010.
The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Legare boarded the fishing boat Hot Tuna and discovered the following violations:
- The boat did not have a life ring
- The boat’s flares has expired prior to 2007
- The boat’s life raft had expired in 2009
- The boat’s hydrostatic release on the emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) had expired in 2005
- The battery of the EPIRB failed when tested
“All of this equipment is essential for the safety of the crew,” said Petty Officer 1st Class James Bayer, the search and rescue controller at the First Coast Guard District Command Center in Boston. “This gear can save your life if you find yourself in distress and to not have it on board your vessel can put you and your crew in a dangerous and potentially deadly situation.”
The 2-person crew of the Hot Tuna, which runs out of Harwich, Massachusetts, was directed to return to port and restricted from getting underway until the vessel was verified compliant with Coast Guard regulations.
“With temperatures dropping it’s more important than ever that mariners ensure they have the proper, required gear on board their vessel and make sure it’s in good, working order,” said Bayer. “We are boarding vessels to ensure they meet the requirements in hopes that this gear would save [the crew’s lives] if they were in the position to need it.”