4 dead, 1 missing in fishing tragedy

Updated: A couple weeks ago, we attended the annual blessing of the fleet at Fishermen’s Terminal, which is a good reminder of the risks of open sea fishing. Now there’s the first major incident of the halibut fishing season: the Alaska Ranger, owned by the Seattle-based Fishing Company of Alaska, has sunk in the Bering Sea. At first, it looked like everyone might make it out alive. But now there’s word that four crew members are dead and one person is missing. 42 people have been rescued by the Coast Guard and surrounding fishing boats.

(Photo from the Coast Guard.) The vessel started taking on water shortly before 3 a.m. after losing control of its rudder 120 miles west of Dutch Harbor. The crew abandoned ship, but as you can imagine, the water is ice cold. “I figure there’s quite a bit of hypothermia going on,” said a Coast Guard official. Another terrible fishing tragedy.

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