Coast Guard video shows daring rescue of Race to Alaska sailors after boat capsizes

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Newly released helicopter footage shows U.S. Coast Guard’s daring rescue of sailors pulled from the sea after their boat capsized during an annual marine race from Washington state to Alaska.   

Event organizers for Race to Alaska said in a statement that the occupants on seven boats had dropped out of the race by 1 p.m. because of rough waters across the Strait of Juan de Fuca northwest of Seattle, KOMO-TV reported.

Three contestants were hoisted from the water by the U.S. Coast Guard and one was rescued by a boat operated by race organizers. All four people rescued were taken to a hospital after showing signs of hypothermia, KING-5 reported.

U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Northwest tweeted hoist camera footage Monday from the rescue of two individuals who entered the water after their sailing-vessel capsized. 

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The Coast Guard rescued Race to Alaska sailors off the Washington coast after boat capsized.

The Coast Guard rescued Race to Alaska sailors off the Washington coast after boat capsized. (U.S. Coast Guard Northwest Pacific)

The video shows one member of the Port Angeles based helicopter crew plunge into the water and help one of the individuals into a metal basket like apparatus that is then hoisted upward. The first individuals is seen shaking as another Guardsman helps guide the apparatus into the helicopter. A second person is recovered from the water.

A sailboat in the Race to Alaska capsized off the coast of Washington, Monday, June 13, 2022.

A sailboat in the Race to Alaska capsized off the coast of Washington, Monday, June 13, 2022. (U.S. Coast Guard Northwest Pacific)

The Coast Guard said the remaining race participants on Monday took shelter near Protection Island, Dungeness Spit or returned to land. A Coast Guard patrol boat remained in the area and was ready to respond. 

The Coast Guard rescued Race to Alaska sailors off the Washington coast after boats capsized.

The Coast Guard rescued Race to Alaska sailors off the Washington coast after boats capsized. (U.S. Coast Guard Northwest Pacific)

One photo tweeted by the Coast Guard showed a yellow catamaran sailboat that had flipped over.

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The event is in its sixth year and draws contestants from across the country with a goal of being first to get from Port Townsend, Washington, to Ketchikan, Alaska, on a non-motorized vessel that is completely self-supported.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.