A joint search and rescue effort by the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, Operation Bahamas, Turks & Caicos (OPBAT), Police Force, and United States Coast Guard (USCG) resulted in the retrieval of thirty-one (31) suspected migrants from waters southwest of Bimini on Friday, 21 January 2022. Sometime after 9 o’clock Friday morning, OPBAT reported a possible migrant vessel had departed from Bimini that morning. Soon after, it was reported that the same vessel had taken on water and eventually capsized.
A US Coast Guard helo arrived on the scene soon after and reported there were persons in the water and life rafts were dropped to assist them. The Defence Force Bimini Detachment arrived shortly after via patrol craft coaxswained by Chief Petty Officer Ronnie Neymour and were able to rescue the persons from the water. One (1) female was trapped under the capsized vessel and with the help of a Royal Bahamas Police Force diver, was also rescued. All the migrants were taken to Alice Town, Bimini for medical evaluation and handed over to the relevant authorities.