A search and rescue operation is underway for at least a dozen people off the coast of Louisiana after a 129-foot boat capsized during a "really powerful" weather event. Officials say six survivors have been plucked from the water so far after the vessel left from Port Fourchon on Tuesday and headed right into what a National Weather Service meteorologist describes as a "wake low," an unusual low-pressure weather phenomenon that resulted in winds of up to 80mph, reports NBC News. Per a release, the US Coast Guard received an emergency beacon notification around 4:30pm of a commercial lift vessel in distress and dispatched the Coast Guard Cutter Glenn Harris to the scene within a half-hour.
That vessel rescued one person from the water, while another Coast Guard boat picked up a second survivor. Good Samaritans in their own vessels rescued another four people. The overturned boat has been identified as the Seacor Power, with a spokesman telling the New York Times that 18 people had been on board when it left port; a Lafourche Parish official says the ship's manifest indicated 19 were on the ship. Coast Guard cutters and other vessels, as well as private boats, a plane, and a helicopter are continuing the search and rescue operation. The Seacor Power apparently wasn't the only vessel that ran into trouble Tuesday. The Times cites a Facebook post from another boater who says he was on the water during the storm. "[I've] NEVER Heard soo many MAYDAY calls in my life!" Bruce Simon wrote Tuesday. "Other boats have flipped [and] are taking on water! ... Please pray for the Lost!" (Read more boat accident stories.)