Story by U.S. Coast Guard,
17th District Public Affairs
KODIAK, AK – Four kayakers, previously reported overdue, were located
safe in Thumb Cove on the east side of Resurrection Bay this afternoon
by the tour boat Coastal Explorer. Jimmy Ahern, of NakNek, Mason
Hill, Robby Hilland Duke Tibbetts of Anchorage were waiting for the wind
to subside before attempting to return to port.
Coast Guard aircraft and boats scoured Resurrection Bay Sunday evening
and early today searching for the four people reported overdue Sunday
evening from a trip to Bear Glacier. The group left a float plan
with a friend saying they would leave Lowell Point, near Seward, Friday
morning then paddle to Bear Glacier to return early Sunday afternoon.
The friend reported the group overdue to the Coast Guard at 8:50 p.m.
after they hadn’t returned.
The group has outdoor experience, but minimal kayaking experience.
The group has camping gear and enough supplies to last the extra days.
According to the Alaska Division of Parks and Boating Safety, Kayakers
are only required to carry a Coast Guard approved life jacket onboard,
if the operator is under the age of 13 then the jacket must be worn.
If the kayakers are operating at night then they must have a night
signaling device such as a waterproof flashlight.
The Coast Guard would like to remind all boaters that having the right
equipment on board your vessel, sometimes in excess of the minimum
requirements, could keep minor trouble from becoming a fight for
survival. Kayakers should be especially careful when operating in
Alaska’s unpredictable waters.
The Coast Guard suggests that in addition to a lifejacket, Kayakers
should file a float plan with a family member, friend or marina operator
before leaving on their trip. It is also suggested that you carry a
communication device like a radio or cell phone (if you are within its
operating range) so you can call for help. You can also call the
person with your float plan and make changes if you are unable to make
it back at your scheduled time so that costly searches can be avoided.