Multiple agencies assist sailboat in distress in Albemarle Sound

[photo courtesy Sgt. John Beardsley/N.C. Wildlife Law Enforcement]

Multiple agencies assisted a sailboat that ran into trouble as winds increased Thursday in the Albemarle Sound off Tyrrell County.

The U.S. Coast Guard alerted North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission Law Enforcement at 12:30 p.m. that the solo sailor needed assistance, said Sgt. John Beardsley.

N.C. Wildlife Officer Dylan Hanes responded with N.C. Marine Patrol Officer Nick Mobley and were first to make contact with the man, who was uninjured.

His small sailboat was unable to make any headway due to the strong winds, approximately 1.5 miles off the Tyrrell County shoreline and six miles northeast of the mouth of the Scuppernong River.

N.C Wildlife Officer Chad Warren and Sgt. Beardsley also responded, as well as a U.S. Coast Guard boat from Station Elizabeth City.

The Coast Guard crew agreed to tow the man and his sailboat to Columbia to wait out the bad weather.

“The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission would like to encourage boaters to pay close attention to the weather before getting underway, and always wear your lifejacket,” Beardsley said.

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Sam Walker was news director for, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, Big 94.5 WCMS and Z 92.3 from August 2011 to March 2022.