Crab Boat Sinks in Bering Sea; One Dead
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) _ A crab boat with six crew members sank in the Bering Sea on Saturday, killing at least one, and the Coast Guard was searching for three aboard who were still missing.
The Coast Guard and Alaska State Troopers said three crewmen were recovered: One survived, one died and the condition of the third man, who remained aboard a trooper vessel, was not immediately known, said Coast Guard spokeswoman Gail Sinner.
The Coast Guard received an ``emergency position-indicating radio beacon″ Saturday morning from the Big Valley, a 92-foot crab boat out of Kodiak.
A patrol vessel sent to the location of the beacon found ``a debris field″ where the Big Valley sank, Troopers Sgt. Lonnie Gonzales said. The patrol vessel and four aircraft took part in the search.
The Coast Guard helicopter picked up two crewmen: one from the water and one from a life raft. The man in the water died but the man in the raft, Cache Seel of Kodiak, was ``doing well″ at a St. Paul Island hospital, Sinner said.
A third man was pulled from the water by the trooper vessel. All three crewmen recovered wore survival suits, indicating the crew knew the vessel was in distress and had time to don the bulky suits.
The Coast Guard planned to continue searching all night for the other three crewmen.
The vessel was 70 miles west of St. Paul Island, which is one of the Pribilof Islands and about 750 miles west of Anchorage. Seas were listed at 25 feet and winds were more than 40 mph in the area, Gonzales said.
The commercial crab fishing season in Kodiak and the Bering Sea opened at noon Saturday. The Big Valley was seeking snow crab.
Troopers said a second search is seeking a crewman washed overboard the Sultan, an 88- to 92-foot fishing vessel out of Seattle.