Boat Lost off Nantucket Found in Spain
January 25, 2012
A 26’ Regulator outboard-powered center console registered in the U.S., was located 20 miles off the northern coast of Spain on January 17—3 1/2 years after stormy sea conditions ejected its crew off the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts.
The U.S. Coast Guard received the report of the located flotsam from Maritime Rescue Coordination Center Madrid on January 24, 2012, and was able to link the vessel to a search and rescue case that occurred August 25, 2008, near Nantucket.
During that case, the Coast Guard responded to reports of 2 men who had been ejected from the center console vessel Queen Bee while attempting to cross a bar in 6’ to 8’ sea conditions. Both men were able to swim to Esther Island, Massachusett, and were provided first-aid upon recovery.
Aboard the vessel were Scott Douglas and Rich St. Pierre.
The men located a rescue bag with a PFD and swam for 2 hours in an effort to reach the nearest shoreline. “Three things popped out after we got hit,” said Douglas, the vessel owner and operator. “Rich, me, and that bag.”
“There were times when both of us didn’t think we were going to make it,” he continued. “Everything had to go our way. It was a miracle.”
Due to the dangerous sea state, the vessel was left to drift once the men were rescued. The Queen Bee likely drifted into the Gulf Stream and then north into the North Atlantic Current, said Art Allen with the Coast Guard’s office of Search and Rescue. From there it would have headed east to Spain before being located 1,241 days later, after a 3,500-nautical-mile trip.
The Coast Guard deploys data collection buoys designed to track, study, and report currents in the northern Atlantic, said Murphy. Those buoys have been recovered anywhere from regions north of Scotland to, most recently and coincidentally, Spain.
No word yet on whether the men will get their boat back.