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Boater blasts RCIPS response after ‘dire straits’ ordeal on water

A Prospect man blasts emergency responders after a fishing trip went wrong last night near the South Sound main channel, but police told Cayman 27 they did everything they could to help.

“Once you have problems, the RCIPS, the Marine Unit, and everyone else that is entitled to search and rescue will literally wait until you are dead to give you a helping hand,” said Jerrin Carter, who was at the helm of the 14 foot aluminum vessel Tuesday night (20 March).

Mr. Carter told Cayman 27 emergency responders were not quick enough last night in helping those aboard his boat, which ran into trouble just to the west of the channel markers on the outside of the cut.

He said he called 911 for help after an engine failure left him, his brother, and his cousin stranded, but he says 911 dispatchers told him instead to call a friend for help.

Cayman 27 captured the chatter on marine radio as the incident unfolded.

“They were quite in dire straits, they called for assistance,” said a voice through static.”So we don’t have anything here to respond to them, but we are asking anybody else in the area if they could assist at the main south sound channel.”

In a statement Wednesday afternoon, police said they received a report around 8:45 p.m. Tuesday night of a boat with an engine failure that was not taking on water.  Police said 911 contacted the Joint Marine Unit and marine officers, who were off-duty, as well as, the Port Authority.

Police said as those off-duty officers prepared a vessel to launch, a call was put out to all mariners of a boat in distress. They said police were trailering a vessel to south sound to be launched around 45 minutes after the initial call came in when they were informed the boat was being towed and police assistance was no longer needed. Police said a man who injured his foot was taken to hospital by private vehicle.

“Enlisting the aid of other mariners is a regular practice, as marine officers are not on duty 24 hours a day. We respond to emergency situations, but response at times when marine vessels are not already on the water will take longer,” said an RCIPS spokesperson in a press statement.

Mr. Carter joined Cayman 27’s Kevin Morales and Reshma Ragoonath live in the studio to talk more about the ordeal.

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to

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