USS Stout helps injured cargo ship crew member

by Vern Evans

The crew of the Navy destroyer Stout recently provided medical assistance to an injured member of a cargo ship Monday while conducting operations with Carrier Strike Group 8 off the coast of North Carolina.

The Stout’s bridge crew overheard a bridge-to-bridge radio transmission from a cargo vessel requesting medical assistance from the Coast Guard as it completed exercise Group Sail last month, the Navy said in a news release.

The destroyer jumped into action and immediately prepared a small boat team equipped with medical personnel as it headed toward cargo vessel Grande Portogallo, which was en route for Mexico. The Stout sent five sailors on a rigid inflatable boat to embark the cargo vessel and treat the crew member, who suffered injuries from a hot fuel oil spill.

The team eventually determined the injured crew member required a medical evacuation, prompting the Stout team to coordinate with the Coast Guard to arrange a helicopter to arrive on the scene. The Stout team then transferred medical care to the Coast Guard team upon arrival, transporting the patient to shore for additional treatment and evaluation.

“The crew performed well as professionals, quickly transitioning from tactical training to real-life humanitarian assistance,” Cmdr. Desmond Walker, commanding officer of the Stout, said in a statement. “The coordination between our combat information center, bridge, small boat team and the U.S. Coast Guard ensured the fastest response possible, given the type of emergency.”

The Stout is part of the Harry S. Truman carrier strike group. The carrier wrapped up a maintenance period in December and is poised to complete its Composite Training Unit Exercise this summer ahead of deploying later this year.

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