VIDEO: California Fisherman Risks Life To Save Whale Caught In Rope

VIDEO: California Fisherman Risks Life To Save Whale Caught In Rope

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VIDEO: California Fisherman Risks Life To Save Whale Caught In Rope

“This is attempt number 2 when Sam almost gets his face cut in half by a whale fluke!!”

After being told by the Coast Guard help wouldn’t arrive for hours the crew of the F/V Persistence took matters into their own hands to help a distressed whale. The whale was struggling with a rope caught around its body and was swimming in circles before the crew took action. They have since been applauded on social media but ocean experts aren’t so quick to heap praise. The SF Chronicle reports:

“We’ve had people die trying to get in the water, and just last year, we lost one of our responders.” -National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Spokeswman Justin Veizbicke

The Coast Guard also wanted to make clear that their actions were very dangerous and it is best practice to never get in the water with an entangled whale:

“While we are relieved the fishermen were not harmed and the whale may have been freed, we fear this video is a very dangerous example, and may encourage others to attempt such a response in the future.Even authorized, trained responders have been killed while attempting to disentangle whales using the best techniques and specialized equipment.

These animals are very powerful and dangerous in close proximity. In addition, every entangled whale is not necessarily in imminent danger, meaning that there is time to wait for the authorized responders and not requiring these types of emergency actions. And cutting just the visible lines may not totally free the animal, making it harder for responders to help.”

-Second Attempt

This was their first attempt:

 

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