Coast Guard helps whale-watching boat taking on water

SMITH ISLAND — Coast Guard officials responded Thursday afternoon to reports of a whale-watching boat taking on water off of Smith Island>> See photos of the response

All on board were wearing life jackets, and all 49 passengers were unhurt. Five crew members initially stayed with the 60-feet boat.

The boat was purposely grounded on a Smith Island beach due to it taking on water for unknown reason, the Coast Guard said. Smith Island is an island located in the eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca – west of Whidbey Island and south of Lopez Island.

Coast Guard crews were responding with a boat from Station Bellingham and helicopter from Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles, and the crew of the cutter Wahoo and a boat crew from Station Port Angeles were on the way.

The Island County Sheriff's deputies said the Coast Guard is the lead agency.

A picture of passengers being rescued by the Coast Guard is below.




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