Containership Captain Medevaced in the Caribbean
The U.S. Coast Guard medically evacuated the Captain of the 734-foot Singapore-flagged containership M/V Maersk Batam, approximately 100 nautical miles south of Puerto Rico, Monday night.
The containership captain, a U.K. citizen, was experiencing life threatening symptoms of a possible stroke during the ship’s transit from St. Marta, Colombia to their next scheduled port call in Southhampton, England.
Coast Guard Sector San Juan watchstanders received the medevac request at 9:55 a.m. Monday from the M/V Maersk Batam, as the ship was transiting 175 nautical miles southwest of Mona Island, Puerto Rico. Coast Guard watchstanders launched a Coast Guard MH-65D helicopter crew from Air Station Borinquen to conduct the medevac, and diverted the Coast Guard Cutter Thetis (WMEC-910) to shorten the distance with the M/V Maersk Batam and serve as an emergency platform for the rescue helicopter if required.
Watchstanders coordinated with Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Virgin Islands authorities throughout the medevac.
They also inquired and received from the M/V Maersk Batam that the patient’s condition was unrelated and that he was not experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.
Once on scene, the helicopter deployed the aircraft rescue swimmer to M/V Maersk Batam to assess the patient’s condition. The aircrew used a rescue litter to hoist the ship’s captain aboard the aircraft. Following the hoist, the patient was transported the Cyril E. King airport in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, where he was received by awaiting emergency medical services personnel and taken to the island’s Royal Lester Schneider Regional Hospital.