Coast Guard rescues injured fisherman 150 miles offshore Yaquina Bay

The Coast Guard medevaced an injured fisherman Tuesday from a 63-foot commercial fishing boat operating about 150 miles offshore from Yaquina Bay, Oregon.

Rescued was Nathanial Miller, 24.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Station Yaquina Bay received a call for help Tuesday at about 1:30 p.m. from a person using a satellite phone aboard the fishing boat Piky.

The crew member reported that Miller, who was working aboard Piky, suffered a serious eye injury and vision loss after a line slipped while he was reeling in a tuna, and a swivel tackle hit him in the eye.

After the distress was relayed from the station to watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector North Bend, Oregon, a Coast Guard flight surgeon deemed it necessary to medevac Miller and transport him to a higher level of medical care as soon as possible.

Watchstanders instructed Piky's captain to transit toward shore to close the distance and shorten response time for the medevac.

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Sector Columbia River, and an HC-27J Spartan medium-range surveillance, search and rescue aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento in McClellan, California, deployed to assist the injured fisherman.

Once on scene, the Jayhawk aircrew hoisted the man, while the Spartan aircrew provided air cover and communication and logistic support. The Jayhawk aircrew flew Miller to Oregon Health & Science University Hospital in Portland and transferred his care to medical professionals shortly after 6 p.m.

"This rescue was the result of multiple Coast Guard units across the Pacific area working together to coordinate a successful offshore medevac," said Lt. Matthew Peryea, command duty officer at the 13th Coast Guard District Command Center. "The teamwork of all units involved is testament to service dedication we take pride in as we celebrate the Coast Guard's 230th birthday."

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