The Coast Guard assisted three people Sunday whose fishing vessel started taking on water approximately 80 miles southeast of Cape May Sunday morning.
Watchstanders from Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay received notification from the fishing vessel Viking II at approximately 12:45 a.m. The crew indicated they were taking on water and the water level was rising. The installed bilge pump was not able to keep up with the rate of flooding, they said.
Coast Guard helicopter crews from separate stations responded. A Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew responded to the scene and lowered a dewatering pump to the Viking II.
The pump, however, was not able to keep up with the water intake, according to the Coast Guard. The Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., Hc-130 aircrew dropped a second pump but the Viking II crew was unable to recover it.
The pumps were later recovered by the Cape May-based, 87-foot Coast Guard Cutter Ibis. The Ibis also took the Viking II crew onboard from the fishing vessel Miss Suzanne. The Miss Suzanne had been in the vicinity and had taken the Viking II crewmembers onboard.
The Coast Guard Cutter Ibis took the crewmen back to Cape May.
The Viking II continued to sink. There was no sign of pollution in the area.