Six crewmembers saved from sinking tug off Cape Fear, N.C
Six crewmembers have been rescued from the tug “Valour” 37 miles off the coast of Cape Fear, N.C. Three other crewmen are missing.
The 135-foot tug was towing a 500-foot barge loaded with 140,000 barrels of petroleum byproduct on Jan. 17 when it encountered 15- to 20-foot seas and gale-force winds. The “Valour” radioed the U.S. Coast Guard for help about 11:30 p.m. after a crewmember fell overboard and the tug started to take on water.
A Coast Guard Dolphin HH-65 helicopter from Charleston, S.C., rescued one crewmember and brought him to a hospital in Myrtle Beach. The tug’s remaining eight crewmen stayed on board until the “Justin Fox,” a 125-foot tugboat, arrived on the scene. The “Justin Fox” rescued five more crewmembers from the “Valour” before it sank.
“The Coast Guard is still searching for the tug’s three remaining crewmembers and the 500-foot barge,” the Coast Guard said in a statement.