Two people were rescued by the Norwalk Fire Department’s Marine Division, with assistance from Westport Marine Police, late Friday afternoon when the 34 foot yacht they were piloting struck a reef off the eastern end of Cockenoe Island and started taking on water.
According to Norwalk Fire Department officials, rescuers received a radio distress call from the 34 foot yacht at about 4:30 p.m. When rescuers arrived on scene they found the boat taking on water after it had apparently struck a reef that projects eastward from the island.
Members of the Norwalk marine unit, with assistance from Westport Marine Police and sea salvage and towing company SeaTow, immediately started a de-watering operation to keep the yacht from sinking. Norwalk firefighters added a third pump and made an unsuccessful attempt to plug to the leak. As the group worked to keep the yacht floating, Norwalk and Darien police marine units arrived on scene to assist.
Once the vessel was stable the two SeaTow boats towed the boat with Westport Police and Norwalk Fire’s personnel on board to maintain the de-watering operation. The yacht was towed to Norwalk’s , where it was removed from the water using a sling lift.
Not only did members of the marine units rescue the two occupants of the vessel, they also averted a potential environmental mishap by preventing a fuel spill: The yacht reportedly had about 100 gallons of diesel in its 500 gallon tank.