The Coast Guard on Friday medevaced a stroke victim from a tanker ship approximately 400 miles off the coast of Virginia. The rare footage of the rescue was later released.
Watchstanders at the Coast Guard’s Fifth District command center were notified by a crewmember on the tanker ship Arctic Flounder that a chief officer aboard had shown symptoms of a possible stroke.
Aircrews aboard an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter and an HC-130 Hercules airplane from Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina launched to assist.
Due to the extensive distance, the Coast Guard Fifth District coordinated with U.S. Fleet Forces Command to have the helicopter land on the USS Arleigh Burke to refuel before conducting the medevac.
Once refueled, the aircrews met the Arctic Flounder and hoisted the man onto the helicopter. They transported him to Norfolk Sentara General Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia.
“The seamless coordination between U.S. Fleet Forces Command, the Coast Guard and the Arctic Flounder was key to the operation,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer Robert Delano, command duty officer during the case. “Without the assistance of the Arleigh Burke, we would’ve had to wait for the ship to make it closer to shore, in a situation where time is of the essence and a person’s life is at stake.”