February 3, 2017
Darien Marine Police Rescue Overdue Boater
Det. Sgt. Jeremiah P.
For Immediate Release
Darien, CT - At
approximately 6:00pm on 02/01/2016 this agency received a call of an overdue
boater. The caller reported that the missing
subject was his 16 year old brother and that he had gone out for a short boat
ride at approximately 4:30pm and had not returned home. The caller went on to explain that he
attempted to call his brother’s cell phone numerous times but his cellphone was
turned off. The Darien Police Marine
Division and Noroton Fire Boat were then dispatched.
As officers arrived to the Long Neck
Point area, they met with the subject’s father who was trying to see if he
could see the vessel from shore. The
subject’s father stated that the vessel was a 21’ Mako center console.
Once onboard “Darien 127” (the
Darien Police patrol vessel) the United States Coast Guard was notified of the
circumstances. As “Darien 127” exited
the harbor, officers activated the vessel’s FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared)
camera. Almost immediately officers
observed a small vessel matching the description of the Mako. Using remote controlled search and high
powered LED flood lights, the officers were able to illuminate the area and
confirmed that the vessel they located was in fact the one that had been
reported missing. The FLIR and lighting
systems are part of the equipment and technology package donated by The Darien Foundation for the new
vessel which was placed into service in October of 2016.
The operator of the Mako was
confirmed to be the missing 16 year old from Darien. The subject explained that the boat had
broken down close to two hours earlier and he was forced to anchor. He also stated that his phone battery had
died and that his VHF radio was not hooked up.
After firing off three flares, the subject decided to lie down in the
boat to try to keep warm. Although the
outside temperature was only 35 degrees and dropping, the 16 year old did not require
any medical attention.
After the subject was brought
onboard of the police vessel, officers secured the Mako on a stern tow and
brought it to the Darien Boat Club. The
Coast Guard and Noroton Fire Department were then notified that their
assistance was not needed.
It was later determined that the
boater was properly licensed and although he was not in violation of any
boating regulations, he was advised to better prepare prior to going out in dangerous
conditions. It was clear that if more
time had elapsed he would have likely suffered from hypothermia.