Rear Admiral Michael McAllister, commander of the Coast Guard 17th District, said the decision to suspend a search is always difficult and made with great care and consideration. The search began when the Coast Guard received an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon alert on the morning of Feb. 11, with the launching of aircraft crews, who were quickly joined in the search by two good Samaritan fishing vessels, the Silver Spray and Bering Rose, plus additional Coast Guard support. Volunteers on St. George Island also conducted shoreline searches.
In all, the Coast Guard coordinated 21 searches involving more than 69 aircraft and surface hours and covering some 5,730 square nautical miles. Aircraft located a debris field in the general area of the EPIRB alert, including the transmitting EPIRB, a life ring from the Destination, buoys, tarps and an oil sheen.
The Destination, which was registered in Seattle, had departed Dutch Harbor on Feb. 10 before vanishing off of St. George the following day. An investigation is underway into what happened as the vessel was headed out to participate in the snow crab fishery.
The Coast Guard was able to rescue three people from the fishing vessel Predator on Feb. 13, after it ran aground and began taking on water near Akutan Harbor.
The crew aboard a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter hoisted the three crewmembers and transported them to Akutan with no medical issues reported.
Coast Guard 17th District personnel said the Predator ran hard aground, resulting in an eight-inch crack in the hull, and the crew was unable to keep up with the flooding utilizing dewatering pumps. Weather on scene at the time of that rescue was 25-mile-an-hour winds and 10-foot seas.