F/V Majestic Blue Sinks in South Pacific

This just in via the gCaptain tip line:

SITUATION:

The Fishing Vessel (F/V) MAJESTIC BLUE sank in the South Pacific Ocean during the early morning hours today due to an unknown cause. 22 crew were rescued and are reported to be in stable condition. Two crew (master and chief engineer) remain missing. Search efforts are ongoing.

SUMMARY:

At 140253Z CCGD14 received a relay from CCGLANTAREA regarding investigation of a 406 EPIRB distress alert and determined that the F/V MAJESTIC BLUE/WDE4888 (US) was sinking/sunk, due to an unknown cause, in a position approximately 180NM south of the Rescue Coordination Center (RCC) Honolulu SAR boundary, in the RCC Fiji AOR. Twenty four (24) people on board (pob) reportedly abandoned ship into a shipboard life raft; however, later reports identified that two men are missing: the Captain, who is a U.S. citizen, (Master David K. Hill) and the Chief Engineer, who is Korean (YANG CHANGCHEOL (ROK)). A sister vessel F/V PACIFIC BREEZE (US), approximately 70NM away at the time of the distress alert (approx 6.5 hours transit), immediately diverted en route to effect rescue. RCC Fiji assumed SAR Mission Coordinator (SMC) with notification and communications relay with USCG Sector Guam (Vessel homeport is Guam).

22 remaining crew members were picked up by the F/V PACIFIC BREEZE (US), including 9 other Korean survivors.

ACTION:

RCC Fiji is the SMC. The U.S. Coast Guard has been assisting the government of Fiji in conducting a search for the two missing persons. D14 is sending a C‐130 from Air Station Barber’s Point and will be on scene at first light. Three additional sister fishing vessels are en route. Once the first vessel arrives at approximately 1900Z, PACIFIC BREEZE will depart the scene with the survivors for either Guam or Fiji. USCG National Command Center and Pacific Command Center will continue to monitor and provide updates.

Some of you may remember gCaptain forum member Doug Pine’s adventures while working aboard the Majestic Blue. According to Doug’s comments in the forum, Captain David Hill, who relieved Doug, is missing along with the C/E.  SAR is in progress on the scene.  Join the discussion on this incident in the gCaptain forum, HERE.