Coast Guard hoists stricken man off fishing boat

Posted: Friday, February 05, 2010

KODIAK - A Coast Guard helicopter hoisted a 40-year-old man complaining of chest pains from a fishing boat in the Bering Sea.

The Coast Guard Juneau office took a call just before 5 p.m. Wednesday that the man was on the Alaskan Leader, a Kodiak-based longliner 265 miles northwest of St. Paul Island.

The Coast Guard has two helicopters on St. Paul during the opilio crab season. They reached the ship at about 9:30 p.m. but winds up to 35 mph and waves of 20 feet prevented a rescue.

The helicopters tried again Thursday and Chad Smith was lifted off the vessel just before noon.

The Coast Guard said the helicopters would head to St. Paul, where Smith could take a commercial medical flight to Anchorage.

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