Boat sinks off Alaska; Coast Guard rescues 5

May 22, 2011 - 7:44 PM

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Coast Guard helicopter plucked five people off a life raft as their pleasure boat sank about 85 miles north of Kodiak Island.

The Coast Guard says the five people, all from Anchorage, had donned survival suits.

The agency took a mayday call by VHF radio late Sunday morning from the 60-foot Nordic Mistress.

A helicopter crew from Kodiak launched at 11:50 a.m. and the Coast Guard diverted a HC-130 Hercules airplane to help search for the vessel.

After a 45-minute flight, the helicopter reached the sinking vessel, which was partially submerged.

Five people from the boat were in the life raft, surrounded by debris.

The Coast Guard says the life raft was bobbing in 6-foot seas with winds blowing at 15 mph.