Two U.S. coastguardsmen have died and two others are recovering from hypothermia after their 21-foot boat capsized in the rough waters of the lower Niagara River, near New York’s border with Canada.
“With heavy hearts we report that Petty Officer Scott Chism died this morning at 9:29," Coast Guard Lt. Mark Moland said. “Seaman Chris Ferreby passed away this morning at 8:10."
Chism, 25, of Lakeside, Calif., and Ferreby, 23, of Morristown, N.J., were pronounced dead after all four crew members were transported to Mount St. Mary’s Hospital in Lewiston, N.Y.
Moland said the other two men are expected to make full recoveries from hypothermia.
“Petty Officer Michael Moss and Petty Officer William Simpson are in stable condition," Moland said this morning. “Both of them have been reported to be doing well and are expected to be released later today."
Went Missing on Patrol
The four crew members were thrown from their inflatable, rigid-hull boat during the night when it was hit by a four-foot wave, a Coast Guard official said.
The men had been on a law enforcement patrol of the river that began at 7:45 p.m. Friday, a Coast Guard statement said. The men were found at 12:30 a.m. wearing dry suits and life jackets in frigid Lake Ontario about three miles from the mouth of the river.
The search for the men began after they failed to check in overnight and failed to respond to any calls, according to the Coast Guard statement.
The four were plucked from the water after a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter located their overturned boat in the area.
“It’s onshore … approximately a mile from the mouth of the Niagara River on Lake Ontario, and if conditions permit we’re going to try and get out there to recover it," Chief Petty Officer Adam Wine said early this morning.
ABCNEWS.com's Michael S. James and ABC Radio contributed to this report.