By Bay City News Service
Bay Area Coast Guard crews rescued four people from a life raft off the coast of Big Sur today, Saturday, after a tug boat sank while towing a barge, according to a U.S. Coast Guard spokesman.
The Coast Guard received a distress call from the tug Delta Captain just before 3 p.m. today, according to Lt. j.g. Mark Leahey. The Delta Captain is owned by Marine Express, an Alameda-based marine services and supply company.
The tug was around 13 nautical miles off Point Sur at the time, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Ocean Service.
Rescue crews deployed including a 47-foot Motor Life Boat from Station Monterey, Coast Guard Cutter Sockeye, which is homeported in Bodega Bay, and an HH-65 Dolphin rescue helicopter from Air Station San Francisco, Leahey said.
The rescue helicopter found the survivors on a raft and used a rescue swimmer to hoist them aboard. All four were taken to Monterey for medical evaluation, but no injuries were reported, Leahey said.
The Delta Captain sank but may remain attached to the barge it was towing by a 1,400 foot tow cable. Additional tug boats are on their way to the scene to help tow the barge.
The NOAA and the Department of Fish and Wildlife Office of Spill Prevention have been contacted in case of a potential oil or fuel spill caused by the incident.
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