Nine Cuban nationals who got into difficulty ¬†at sea are now safely in Grand Cayman following an air and sea rescue.
At 3.50pm today, Monday 3 September, the RCIPS police helicopter was on routine maritime patrol when the crew saw and investigated a vessel 40 miles south east of Grand Cayman.¬† The ¬†20 foot sailing boat was drifting in the water with nine people on board.
The occupants were seen to wave a white flag and they had no radio communications.
The helicopter crew established. – through signing – that the boaters, who were Cuban nationals, ¬†¬†needed assistance.
Due to the distance from shore, the police crew identified a tanker approximately ¬†ten miles away, the MV Emma Bulkers.¬† The helicopter crew established radio contact with the tanker and requested that it render assistance. The tanker was guided to the sailing vessel, and all nine people were taken on board the tanker, which then continued to head towards Grand Cayman.
All nine appeared to be in good health.
The Joint Marine Unit vessel Cayman Guardian, with police, customs and immigration officers, deployed and met with the tanker. The Cubans were transferred to Guardian, which has now arrived at the Royal Watler terminal. In George Town. .
Immigration officials met the boat on arrival.