Coast Guard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and partner agencies responded to a grounded Haitian vessel Sunday, approximately 200 yards off Ocean Reef in Key Largo, Florida.
Coast Guard, CBP and partner agencies rescued 356 Haitians from the vessel and no injuries were reported. A good Samaritan notified Coast Guard Sector Key West watchstanders Sunday, at approximately 1 p.m., of a blue Haitian vessel grounded off Ocean Reef.
“We worked seamlessly with our state and federal partners to safely remove all the persons from this vessel.” said Capt. Jeffrey Randall, Chief of Staff, Coast Guard Seventh District. “The Coast Guard and partner agencies are continuously patrolling the Mona Passage, Windward Passage, Caribbean Sea and the approaches to the United States to stop these dangerous and unsafe voyages.”
“The coordinated and timely response of the U.S. Border Patrol and our federal, state, and local partners potentially saved the lives of these migrants today,” said Walter N. Slosar, Chief Patrol Agent, U.S. Border Patrol, Miami Sector.
Agencies who assisted with the rescue:
Station Miami Beach
Air Station Miami
Cutter Robert Yered
Cutter William Trump
U.S. Border Patrol
Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Operations
Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Monroe County Sheriff’s Office
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue
Biscayne National Park Service
Ocean Reef Police Department
Since Oct. 1, 2021, Coast Guard crews have rescued 1,152 Haitians compared to:
1,527 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2021
418 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2020
932 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2019
609 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2018
419 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2017
Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, all migrants receive food, water, shelter and basic medical attention. Migrants attempting to enter the United States illegally by sea can expect to be repatriated, regardless of their nationality.