Survivors were initially located by an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon.
Two fishermen found drifting in a life boat in the Gulf of Mexico near Panama City were rescued by the Coast Guard on Saturday.
Coast Guard Sector Mobile watchstanders received notification at 9 p.m. Friday from the Eighth Coast Guard District Command Center of an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) signal coming from the area of the Panama City coastline. The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office later reported a possible life raft with two people on board.
Watchstanders at Sector Mobile directed the launch of a Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile HC-144 Ocean Sentry fixed-wing aircrew and a Coast Guard Station Panama City Response Boat-Medium boatcrew to search for the raft.
The raft was located at approximately 11:30 p.m. by the aircrew, and was recovered by a good Samaritan vessel. The survivors were later transferred to the Franklin County Sheriff who brought them to shore Saturday morning.
“This case is a prime example of the great coordination and teamwork between the Coast Guard, local law enforcement and the maritime community,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Mark Cole, an operations specialist and command duty officer at Sector Mobile.
Involved in the search was:
Coast Guard Station Panama City Response Boat-Medium crew
Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile HC-144 fixed-wing aircrew
Franklin County Sheriff’s Office