Four people were rescued after two boats collided near Clearwater Beach on Thursday, according to the Coast Guard.
The Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg received a call around 7 a.m. to report that a 21-foot-long vessel and an 18-foot-long vessel had been damaged in a collision, the agency said in a news release.
About 15 minutes later, a rescue crew from the Station Sand Key arrived at the scene and brought three people aboard, including one who was injured, the Coast Guard said. The three were taken to awaiting medical professionals, the release said.
A fourth boater was taken to land by a commercial salvage company, said Coast Guard spokesperson Erik Villa. The vessels’ owners are working with commercial salvage companies to deal with the damaged boats.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Jamyson Trancso, Station Sand Key coxswain, said all four people were wearing life jackets when the boats collided, and that could have saved their lives if they had fallen into the water during the collision.
“Not only should people wear life jackets, it is also important for mariners to use their navigation lights at night, check the weather before going out, have a marine radio and an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon available in case of an emergency,” he said in the news release.