Boaters rescued after woman spots flares from land

A father and son were able to be towed to safety after their boat broke down because someone on land spotted flares they shot off and reported them.

According to the Coast Guard, a woman called about 9 p.m. to report three red flare sightings about two to three miles from her home in Geneva.

The Coast Guard responded from Fairport Harbor, Buffalo and Ashtabula as well issuing an urgent marine information broadcast requesting boaters in the area to keep and eye out for distressed boats and assist if possible.

The 25-foot response boat from Station Ashtabula located the distressed boat about 9:35 p.m. and confirmed its occupants had fired the flares.

The Coast Guard boat then towed the broken down boat to safety. It was safely docked in Geneva by 10:10 p.m., according to the Coast Guard.

"This case highlights the importance of reporting flare sightings or other unusual activity," Mike Baron, Coast Guard 9th District recreational boating safety specialist said in a news release. "The boaters were prepared for an emergency with flares; a Good Samaritan on land reported the sighting and remained in contact with search and rescue officials, which in this case prevented a bad situation from getting worse."

Members of the public are encouraged to report any flare sightings to 911 or their local Coast Guard unit.

Get more information on how to effectively report a flare sighting HERE.


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