‘Rogue waves’ prompt dramatic rescue after fishing boat with 8 on board sinks in Hawaii



8 rescued after fishing vessel sinks off Hawaii coast

Raw video: coast guard rescues 8 after a fishing boat sinks north of Hawaii.

Eight men were rescued Sunday hundreds of kilometres off the coast of Hawaii after a couple of rogue waves struck a fishing boat and caused it to sink.

The coast guard said in a news release that the 61-foot fishing vessel, Princess of Hawaii, more than 400 km northeast of Hawaii’s Big Island when it ran into trouble around 11:23 a.m., at which time an emergency position indicating radio beacon alert is received.

A crew was launched at 3 o’clock, and a glow and a lift raft were spotted by a HC-130 Hercules airplane a little more than 2 hours later.

“The crew reported they located the Princess Hawaii is usually overrun with only the bow above the waterline,” the coast guard said.

A Coast Guard crew located the Princess Hawaii is usually overrun with only the bow above the waterline, hundreds of miles from Hawaii on Sunday.

(U. S. Coast Guard photo)

After confirming all crew members were accounted for, the coast guard, said the air crew remained on scene until the 73-foot fishing vessel Commander, who was fishing nearby, arrived on the scene just before 11 pm to the rescue of the crew of the lifeboat.

The owner of the Princess Hawaii told the Associated Press on Tuesday that two huge rogue waves hit the boat, swamping and forces the crew to leave the ship.

A wave struck the back of the of the 61-foot fishing vessel, and another hit the side, Loc Nguyen said.

“It was so great, that they have never seen,” he told the AP. There was too much water on the top and it went.”


Nguyen said the fishing crew had all of about 15 km of the line as the waves crashed, the beating of five workers in the water. The three other members of the crew were inside and were able to deploy the ship’s life raft.

A HC-130 Hercules crew from Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point is located a life raft with eight people aboard the fishing vessel Princess of Hawaii.

(U. S. Coast Guard)

The owner of the boat told the AP that he is “very happy” when he spoke to the survivors heard and there were no injuries.

“I don’t care very much about my boat,” Nguyen said. “I lost money, OK. But if someone was dead or something, would I have a bad feeling my whole life.”

Rogue waves are “extremely rare”, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration website, but there are known causes of the phenomenon.

“Rogues, called ‘extreme storm waves’ by scientists, are waves that are larger than twice the size of surrounding waves, are very unpredictable, and often come unexpectedly from directions other than prevailing wind and waves,” NOAA says.


Rogue Waves Strike Ship

Swells can travel at different speeds over the ocean, and if they are by another they can create “large, towering waves that quickly disappear.”

When waves caused by storms are going against the normal current, very large waves may also form in the open ocean.

“Extreme waves developed in this way tend to be longer lived,” the NOAA says.

The Commander, with the eight crew members on board, is scheduled to arrive in Oahu on Friday, according to the coast guard.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

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