NEW WESTMINSTER, B.C. - Two people have been rescued after their tug boat capsized and sank on the Fraser River near New Westminster, B.C.
The distress call went out about 9 a.m. Thursday, said coast guard officer Jeff Olsson.
"The tug was with another tug trying to manoeuvre a barge just up river of the Pattullo Bridge. I don't know why, but for some reason it capsized and sank."
"The captain made it out of the ship and made it ashore," Olsson said, adding he had some assistance from another nearby boat.
Olsson said the second crew member was on the barge that cut loose from the sinking boat and floated downstream, under both the SkyTrain and Pattullo bridges.
Another tug captured the runaway barge and rescued the second person, he said.
A coast guard hovercraft, officers from both the New Westminster Police Department, Surrey RCMP and several private vessels already on the river responded to the call for help.
A statement from New Westminster police said one of the two people rescued was transferred to hospital with undetermined injuries.
The B.C. River Forecast Centre has issued a high streamflow advisory for the lower Fraser and said it expect to see that area near New Westminster to peak this weekend.
Olsson said the fast-flowing river made such a rescue difficult.
"Basically the time frame becomes short, because everything moves out of the area very quickly."
The sinking boat left debris in the water, and Olsson said a lifeboat and life preserver were recovered.
Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version incorrectly reported that four people were rescued