At approximately 4 p.m., Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England watchstanders received a distress call via VHF-16 radio from the two-person crew aboard the 24-foot sail boat Northern Phoenix, from Ottawa, Canada, saying it was on fire.
A 45-Foot Motor Lifeboat crew from Coast Guard Station Castle Hill launched and arrived on scene at approximately 4:30 p.m. By this time, the Northern Phoenix crew had abandoned ship and boarded an 8-foot life raft. The Coast Guard crew quickly located the raft and brought the two people aboard.
No injuries were reported.
The Rhode Island Department on Environmental Management, North Kingstown Fire Department, and Warwick Fire Department marine units responded to the burning boat, and extinguished the flames. The owner then arranged with commercial salvers to tow the vessel to port.
“The crew of the sailboat was well prepared with a life raft and a handheld marine radio,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Andrew Stokes, the operations unit controller at Sector Southeastern New England’s command center. “Having those tools available ensured a safe rescue.”