The captain of a cargo ship passing 25 miles off the coast of Ocean City, Maryland, was rushed to the hospital in Salisbury by a Coast Guard medevac Tuesday morning.
The 348-foot-long cargo ship Balsa 84, which carries a Panama flag, was headed for the Delaware Bay when crew members called for help around 10:20 Tuesday. The crew told Coast Guard watchstanders that the 61-year-old Filipino captain was showing symptoms of a possible heart attack and needed medical help.
A helicopter from Air Station Atlantic City launched to transport the captain from the ship on the Atlantic Ocean to a hospital ashore. Coast Guard video shows the tricky rescue that followed:
The helicopter crew hoisted the man from the Balsa 84 and took him straight to Peninsula Regional Medical Center in Salisbury.
The Coast Guard says a situation like this shows that when there is a medical emergency on board a ship out in the ocean, time is of the essence.
“We are glad that they contacted us as soon as possible,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Will Lengyel, watchstander during the case. “The speedy notification helped us quickly get the captain the level of care he needed.”
-Meg Walburn Viviano