The U.S. Coast Guard battened down the hatches as it searched for a wayward boat and its missing passengers off the coast of Boston.
The Coast Guard received a report at around 3:30 p.m. Saturday that a “runaway vessel with nobody on it” had been spotted in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, off the coast of Boston between Cape Ann and Cape Cod, according to Petty Officer Briana Carter. The vessel was believed to be 20 to 25 feet long.
Crews from Coast Guard stations at Point Allerton and Scituate, as well as the Coast Guard cutter Sanibel and aircraft from the Air Station at Cape Cod were still employed as of 7:50 p.m. Saturday in the search for the vessel and its missing crew, Carter said.
While Carter was unable to hazard a guess as to what had happened, she confirmed that “it’s definitely not a very common occurrence” for a runaway vessel to appear in this protected waterway known for its whale-watching opportunities.
A map of Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary showing its location off the coast. (Courtesy / National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)