A 14-metre vessel went up in the flames and sank off northern Vancouver Island on Monday (Sept. 27).
According to Canada’s Maritime Forces Pacific (MARPAC), two people were on board and put out a mayday call at roughly 1:30 p.m., but it was a random floatplane that happened to spot the vessel out on the waters near Egg Island (approximately 40 kilometres north of Vancouver Island) that was able to get through on the radio and report the location.
The two people had managed to get off the blazing vessel and into a rowboat and were seen by the pilot heading for shore.
Canadian Forces Base Comox 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron deployed a CC-115 Buffalo airplane and a Cormorant helicopter and upon arrival at the scene, circled for around an hour before rescuers arrived.
Two coast guard vessels from Port Hardy were also involved in the rescue.
The CC-115 Buffalo dropped a radio and a sea-rescue kit, which included a life raft, and then a fishing boat grabbed the two survivors and brought them onboard. They were transferred to one of the coast guard’s boats and brought in to Port Hardy, where they were deemed uninjured and didn’t need medical attention.
Their vessel was unsalvagable. It sank as the coast guard arrived.