• Short Summary

    IF AN AMERICAN PILOT FINDS HIMSELF IN TROUBLE OVER NORTH VIETNAM, HE HEADS FOR THE COAST AND TRIES TO BAIL OUT OVER WATER.

  • Description

    IF AN AMERICAN PILOT FINDS HIMSELF IN TROUBLE OVER NORTH VIETNAM, HE HEADS FOR THE COAST AND TRIES TO BAIL OUT OVER WATER. RESPONSIBILITY FOR RESCUING PILOTS FROM THE GULF OF TONKIN RESTS WITH THE SURFACE SEARCH AND RESCUE SQUADRON (SAR) OF THE U.S. SEVENTH FLEET. FLAGSHIP IS THE GUIDED-MISSILE FRIGATE U.S.S. COONTZ, WHICH WAS ABOUT 20 MILES FROM THE NORTH VIETNAMESE PORT OF HAIPHONG WHEN THE ACCOMPANYING FILM WAS TAKEN.

    THE SQUADRON COMPRISES SEVERAL VESSELS, INCLUDING DESTROYERS AND CRUISERS. ACCORDING TO CAPTAIN FOX, JUNKS PLYING THE COAST HAVE A STANDING OFFER OF SEVERAL HUNDRED U.S. DOLLARS FOR EVERY AMERICAN PILOT THEY PICK UP AND TURN OVER TO THE VIET CONG. SO SOMETIMES A RESCUE SHIP OR HELICOPTER HAS TO RACE THE JUNKS TO THE SPOT WHERE THE PILOT IS FLOATING.

    COMMANDER CUMMINGS IS A SPARE-TIME WATERCOLOURIST. WHENEVER THE COONTZ GETS CLOSE TO A JUNK HE MAKES A ROUGH SKETCH OF THE CRAFT, THEN PAINTS IN THE COLOURS LATER. HE HAS HELD SEVERAL EXHIBITIONS. HIS SKETCHES HAVE BEEN PUBLISHED IN BOOK FORM.

    AT THE STERN, THE COONTZ CARRIES A SEASPRITE HELICOPTER. ANOTHER RESCUE CRAFT CARRIED IS A UTILITY BOAT EQUIPPED WITH A MACHINE GUN. THE BOAT CAN BE LOWERED RAPIDLY IN CASE OF EMERGENCY.

    TO REACH THE COONTZ, THE CAMERAMAN WHO TOOK THIS FILM FLEW BY HELICOPTER FROM THE U.S.S. ENTERPRISE, THE WORLD'S LARGEST AIRCRAFT CARRIER. THE FLIGHT BY HELICOPTER FROM THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER, WHICH WAS SAILING WELL OUT TO SEA IN THE VICINITY OF THE 17TH PARALLEL, TOOK ABOUT AN HOUR.

    AIRCRAFT RETURNING FROM SORTIES OVER NORTH VIETNAM SOMETIMES SWEEP OVER THE SQUADRON IN SALUTE TO THE SHIPS. PHANTOM JETS LOWER THEIR FLAPS AND CRUISE PAST IN FORMATION AT SLOW SPEED - FOR A JET.

    THE COONTZ HAS A CREW OF ABOUT 400.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA3NXJR5H8UBI4CWOEGDGH4ENNN
    Media URN:
    VLVA3NXJR5H8UBI4CWOEGDGH4ENNN
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    29/04/1966
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:02:21:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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