NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - A U.S. Coast Guard boat capsized early Thursday morning while responding to a fishing boat that ran aground in East Rockaway Inlet in Far Rockaway, Queens.
All five members aboard the 25-foot Coast Guard vessel from Station Jones Beach swam to dry land near Beach 19th Street and were safe and accounted for around 5:14 a.m., officials said.
Seven members on the fishing vessel were still on the ship after it ran aground several hours later.
A Coast Guard helicopter from Atlantic City lifted all crew members off the fishing boat and brought them to the beach by 7:10 a.m.
"It was scary," said one crew member.
The Carolina Queen III from Virginia had been out at sea for eight days when the rough seas and winds pushed the vessel to the shore, said fire officials.
The weather was treacherous overnight. Strong gusts of wind, rain, thunder and lighting were reported across the Tristate region.
The fishing boat remained on water after the rescue as fire crews determined how to move it.
The Coast Guard boat ran aground. "Salvage plans are being conducted to remove the fishing vessel and Coast Guard vessel from the inlet," the Coast Guard said in a news release.
The Coast Guard spill response team was dispatched to check for any fuel leaks.