A woman worried because her husband didn't return home to Long Beach Saturday night after embarking on a fishing trip phoned the U.S. Coast Guard, which launched an epic search for the man and his four pals.
They were just fine, spending some quality bro time docked at Avalon Harbor, the USGS says.
The woman isn't facing any possible charges, but the agency said this case illustrates how important it is to have a plan, stick to it, and communicate when you hit the high seas:
The guys said afterward that they had planned to return Sunday afternoon instead of Saturday night, the Coast Guard said. They were chilling overnight at Avalon Harbor, according to a USGS statement:
Coast Guard Command Center watch standers received a phone call at 8 a.m., Sunday morning from one of the passengers stating that they had been moored up in Avalon Harbor all night and planned to return in the afternoon. He was shocked to learn that the Coast Guard had been searching for them. They had not been checking their cell phones or monitoring VHF radio traffic.
The woman had called at 10:51 p.m. Saturday with a report that her husband and his friends had not returned to Shoreline Harbor in Long Beach aboard a 34-foot vessel called the Wahine, the agency said. She had expected them that night.
The Coast Guard sent out the troops, including an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter launched from L.A. and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter launched from San Diego, the USGS states. Boat-based searches, including the deployment of the Coast Guard Cutter Blackfin, also took place in the waters between here and Catalina.
Kyle Kelsey of the USGS:
This case is a perfect illustration of how important it is to not only have a voyage plan prior to departure, but to effectively relay that plan to someone ashore. A simple miscommunication led to a large scale search and rescue effort involving numerous agencies, personnel, and assets.
We hope, at least, that the guys had fun Saturday night. Either way, they'll have a story to tell.