Search suspended for 2 missing in Juneau small-boat capsize
The U.S. Coast Guard is no longer searching for two men missing from the capsize of a small boat in Gastineau Channel Tuesday evening, after three other occupants were rescued.
Search efforts near Aurora Harbor for the missing men -- James Cole, 50, and Sheridan "Scott" Stringer, 48 -- according to a statement from the Coast Guard shortly before 7 p.m. Wednesday.
According to a statement from Juneau police Sgt. Shawn Phelps, a citizen called dispatchers at about 9 p.m. Tuesday after hearing someone “screaming for help” near the harbor’s breakwater. Police subsequently learned that five people and a dog were in the boat, which took on water and capsized near the harbor.
“Two adult females were able to swim to the dock and got in another boat in an attempt to assist the three adult males in the water,” Phelps wrote. “One male was able to climb on to the capsized boat and was brought to the shore and waiting medical staff by the Coast Guard.”
Coast Guard spokeswoman Petty Officer Charly Hengen said the five people had been in a 10-foot skiff at the time.
"It started taking on water due to too many individuals being in the small skiff, thus it then eventually capsized," Hengen wrote.
The women were treated for exposure by Capital City Fire and Rescue medics, according to Phelps; the Coast Guard said both they and the person from the skiff suffered minor hypothermic conditions. The dog also made it ashore, and was taken to Animal Control.
Another Coast Guard spokesman, Petty Officer Colin Fitzgerald, said the water temperature in the channel was 44 degrees during the search for the men.
“They did not have life jackets on,” Fitzgerald said.
Juneau's Harbor Department and police, as well as local search-and-rescue group SEADOGS and Alaska State Troopers, assisted in the search.
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