Coast Guard helicopter crew braves vicious storm to rescue ‘Deadliest Catch’ fisherman

An extremely daring rescue took place on Deadliest Catch, Tuesday, after a rogue wave caused deckhand Francis Katangan to be crushed by 2,000 pounds of steel crab pots.A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter crew attempted to evacuate him but a vicious storm with winds over 30 knots made extraction almost impossible.

“Ultimately, if the guy dies and we can’t do it, we did our best” the helicopter pilot can be heard saying. “And I’d rather have one dead guy than six dead guys.”

The intensity of the moment was not lost on viewers especially when the helicopter crew warned the ship’s captain of how airmen were onboard before attempting one last rescue.

“If we have to abort, we’re going to go straight forward, we have zero five people on the helicopter,” the pilot told the ship’s captain, Rip Carlton.

The warning sent chills through the rest of the fleet listening in.

“Can you hear that?” Captain Casey McManus said from abroad the Cornelia Marie. “That's scary. He's doing that so if that chopper goes down, Rip knows how many guys he's looking for. It kind of makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up.

With less than 10 minutes of fuel remaining for the extract, a diver repelled down to the rolling ship. He quickly secured the injured fisherman to the basket and guided him as he was hoisted to safety in the helicopter. And in a scene like something out of a superhero movie, the diver exited the boat with less than 3 minutes of fuel to spare. The rescue amazed viewers and was a great example of how brave the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard really are.

“That was probably the most challenging hoist we’ve ever done,” the pilot said.

Video transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING]

- Ultimately, if the guy dies and we can't do it, we did our best.

- Yeah.

- I'd rather have one dead guy than six dead guys.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

KYLIE MAR: An extremely daring rescue took place on "Deadliest Catch," Tuesday, after a rogue wave caused deckhand Francis Katangan to be crushed by 2,000 pounds of steel crab pots.

- Don't go to sleep.

- Yeah, stay with us, buddy.

KYLIE MAR: A US Coast Guard helicopter crew attempted to evacuate him, but a vicious storm with winds over 30 knots made extraction almost impossible.

- Captain, we're going to back off.

[OMINOUS MUSIC]

- Hey [INAUDIBLE]. They left.

KYLIE MAR: The intensity of the moment was not lost on viewers, especially when the helicopter crew warned the ship's captain of how many airmen were onboard before attempting one last rescue. The warning sent chills through the rest of the fleet listening in.

- Can you hear that? That's scary. He's doing that. So, if that chopper goes down, Rip knows how many guys he's looking for. it kind of makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up.

KYLIE MAR: With less than 10 minutes of fuel remaining for the extract, a diver repelled down to the rolling ship. He quickly secured the injured fisherman to the basket and guided him, as he was hoisted to safety in the helicopter. And in a scene like something out of a superhero movie, the diver exited the boat with less than three minutes of fuel to spare.

- Woo!

[HELICOPTER WHIRRING]

- Holy [BLEEP].

- Did you see that? The guy saluted [CHUCKLES] and flew by the crane, like, by two inches.

KYLIE MAR: The rescue amazed viewers and was a great example of how brave the men and women of the US Coast Guard really are.

- That was probably the most challenging hoist we've done. That was impressive. I can't thank you enough.

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