Video: Hurricane Sandy

'Bounty' crew members missing

See video footage below from the U.S. Coast Guard
Mon, 10/29/2012 - 4:45pm

    UPDATE: Following an early-morning distress call, the HMS Bounty has sunk off the coast of North Carolina.

    The replica ship had lost communications early Monday, Oct. 29, about 90 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C.

    The search for two members of the 16-person crew continues, with 14 other members of the crew having already been lifted from two rescue boats. None of the rescued members of the Bounty's crew suffered life-threatening injuries.

    A C-130 fixed-wing aircraft, an MH-60 helicopter have already been deployed by the Coast Guard, which was readying to deploy ships to search for the two missing crew members at 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29.

    The Coast Guard is urging boaters not to take any undue risks on the water.

    Calls were made early Monday morning that contact had been lost with the replica Bounty off the coast of North Carolina.

    The Coast Guard sent two MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters at 6:30 a.m. to hoist 14 people from the water.

    The 14 recovered members of the crew were air-lifted to Air Station Elizabeth City to be met with medical services.

    The 16-person crew had to don cold water survival suits and life jackets before abandoning the ship in two 25-foot lifeboats.

    The 180-foot tall ship ran into 18-foot seas and 40-mile-per-hour winds from Hurricane Sandy and was reportedly without propulsion and taking on water.

    On Sunday night, the U.S. Coast Guard received a call from the owner of the vessel saying communications with the ship had been lost.

    The 180-foot tall, three-masted ship was to winter in Galveston, Texas.

    The replica and star of “Mutiny on the Bounty” had been hauled-out by Boothbay Harbor Shipyard for a month for repairs. The ship set sail from Boothbay earlier in the month.

    The ship was housed at the Boothbay Harbor Shipyard for approximately a month as it underwent several repairs, including major bottom-work and new fuel tanks.

    The Bounty is a replica of the famed British vessel that was scuttled in 1789 off the coast of Tahiti following a mutiny.

    Ben Bulkeley can be reached at 633-4620 or Follow him on Twitter: @BBRegisterBen.