Fishing vessel Betty C. on fire, 21 crew rescued, South Pacific
U.S. Coast Guard:
HONOLULU – Twenty-one people are safe after being rescued from a burning boat 230 miles south of Jarvis Island, Nov 29.
Watchstanders at the Joint Rescue Coordination Center received a distress alert from an emergency position indicating radio beacon at 2 a.m.
JRCC determined the EPIRB belonged to Kiribati-flagged, 140-foot fishing vessel Betty C.
JRCC issued a safetynet broadcast to which US-flagged fishing vessel Cape Ferrat responded. Cape Ferrat arrived on scene at 9:30 a.m. and discovered Betty C on fire and its 21 passengers adrift in a small skiff after abandoning ship. Cape Ferrat safely rescued all 21 passengers from the skiff and will transfer them to American Samoa. No injuries were reported and the cause of the fire is unknown.
The vessel’s owner is working to develop a plan to salvage the vessel.
Jarvis Island is an uninhabited 4.5 km2 coral island located in the South Pacific Ocean at 00 22S 160 01W, about halfway between Hawaii and the Cook Islands.
Fishing vessel Betty C., IMO 7397775, gt 1166, built 1874, flag Kiribati.