Local Fire Departments Respond To Capsized Boat Off Cupsogue Beach.
By Ex Chief Bill Renzetti
August 6, 2023

On Sunday evening, the Marine Incident Response Team was activated following reports of a capsized boat near the Moriches Inlet with individuals in the water. The team, made up of specially trained firefighters from various local departments, swiftly responded to the scene.

As fire department marine units were making their way to the area, additional reports emerged, indicating that multiple boats had capsized and multiple people were now in the water. The situation was becoming increasingly urgent, requiring a coordinated and efficient response under the command of the Westhampton Beach Fire Chief.

The Center Moriches Fire Department's Marine 26 was the first rescue boat to arrive at the scene. They spotted a person clinging to an overturned boat amidst the breakers off Cupsogue Beach, half a mile east of the Moriches Inlet. Without hesitation, a Rescue Swimmer was deployed from Marine 26 and entered the ocean to reach the survivor.

Meanwhile, other rescue boats from the Marine Incident Response Team, along with a Suffolk County Police helicopter, scoured the area for any other individuals in need of assistance. The collective efforts of these dedicated responders ensured that every resource was utilized to locate and rescue those in distress.

The Marine Incident Response Team is a collaborative effort between local fire departments, including Center Moriches FD, East Moriches FD, Eastport FD, Mastic FD, Mastic Beach FD, and Westhampton Beach FD. This multi-agency team is specially trained to handle water-based emergencies, working hand in hand with the United States Coast Guard Station Shinnecock.

Since its formation in August of 2021, the Marine Incident Response Team has consistently displayed its life-saving capabilities and proven to be an invaluable asset to the local maritime community. Their swift and effective response to this recent capsized boat incident highlights the importance of their presence in ensuring the safety of individuals navigating the waterways.

The dedication and commitment of these volunteer firefighters, who selflessly put themselves in harm's way to protect others, deserve our utmost gratitude. Their heroic actions serve as a reminder of the critical role that our volunteer emergency responders play in safeguarding our communities, both on land and at sea.

Video courtesy of: Jeff Fost Sr.