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Oak Island Coast Guard crews rescue sailboat off Bald head Island

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By Staff Report

Coast Guard crews out of Oak Island retrieved a disabled sailboat stuck in heavy waves and high winds Thursday night.

PA1 Brandyn Hill of the Coast Guard 5th District public affairs office reported Friday that five people were trapped on the boat overnight.

Trevor Miller contacted Coast Guard Sector North Carolina Command Center from the Emmanuel, a 63-foot sailboat, at approximately 9:15 p.m. Thursday, requesting assistance.

The sailboat lost power approximately 30 miles southeast of Bald Head Island.

A rescue crew was dispatched aboard a 47-foot Motor Life Boat (MLB) to assist from Coast Guard Station Oak Island.

The Coast Guard’s life boat reached the Emmanuel at approximately 5:45 a.m. Friday and placed the sailboat in tow, Hill said.

But the MLB was only able to tow the sailboat at a speed of two knots, approximately 2.5 miles per hour, due to the 14-foot sea state and winds in excess of 30 knots (34.6 mph).

A second MLB crew from Oak Island got underway at approximately 8 a.m. to relieve the first towing crew.

The second life boat took over towing the Emmanuel at approximately 11:30 a.m., approximately 25 miles east of Carolina Beach.

The second MLB crew towed the Emmanuel into the Masonboro Inlet, where a third boat crew took over and moored the sailboat at Seapath Marina in Wrightsville Beach at approximately 4 p.m.

According to Hill, there are no reports of injuries.