The “Fish the Baja” crew had quite a day Thursday June 17, 2011! While trolling near Gordo Bank off San Jose del Cabo we heard an urgent call come over the radio. I was up on the fly bridge of the Solmar with Capt. Javier Abaroa Flores looking for marlin fins when the alert came in “…all boats in the area of Gordo Bank be on the look out for a dive boat that is sinking with 7 persons aboard”. We had no direction or coordinates but trolled a bit faster in the direction we were going. After a second call came in 30 minutes later I asked the Capt to pull the lines and head full speed in our direction.
Another 15 minutes later the Marine helicopter flew by searching this way and that without any clear direction. Finally they started to circle and we headed for that spot! There were 11 people in the water not 7 and one that was drifting away from the group and nearly out of energy. We headed for this lone guy waving a dive sock and threw him a rescue ring! After bring ing the diver aboard he relayed to us the story. After having come to the surface the panga captain told the divers the boat had been swamped by a few big waves and to get aboard. Already partially full of water the panga now had 10 more people aboard and began to continue to take on more water. As the inevitable sinking began to occur the divers began to look for anything that would float …there were no life preservers on board!!!
Our diver had a one gallon oil bottle under his arm. They divers quickly put their cell phone in a dry bag or other container to keep them from getting wet. After the boat sank they began calling for help, but being Mexican that were visiting from the U.S. they were only able to call people in the States. They didn’t even know where exacly they had gone down other than it was the area off Good Bank!!! To add insult to injury we were told that these divers had been chumming sharks and video taping them! Through it all they had been in the 72 degree water for about 1-1/2 hours after the boat sank and were fortunate to be rescued as they were very difficult to see as only there heads were above the water and the waves were very large!!!
Glad to be aboard after 1.5 hours in the 72 degree water AND sharks too!
To follow up, the story made national news in Mexico on Televisa, the Mexican equivilent of CNN, that Thursday night! The following Saturday at the Grand Solmar Resort’s ribbon cutting ceremony I was introduced to Admiral Costillo of the Mexican Navy. He was very appreciative and actually arranged a tour of the naval base in Cabo Sn Lucas the next day with a 45 minute cruise on one of the rescue ships stationed there! Also at the party was Armando Figaredo from Televisa and he interviewed me for a follow story which aired on nationally in Mexico the next Monday evening! When I get that footage I will upload to the site! A good friend of mine a few days later was walking in Cabo San Lucas and several locals were saying “good job and Thank you”! ” You did a fantastic job and here in Cabo people are very grateful with the Fish the Baja guys!! “
Check out this news broadcast that aired on the Mexican equivalent of CNN Televisa: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DdYfRqlHSHQ