4 mariners rescued after boat loses mast off North Carolina


CAPE LOOKOUT, N.C. (AP) -- The U.S. Coast Guard has rescued four mariners whose sailboat lost its mast in a storm off the North Carolina shore.

News outlets report officials received a distress call Monday, located the 55-foot (17-meter) sailboat Tuesday and had the four men back on land by Wednesday.

The men were uninjured, but in addition to being demasted, the boat's steering gear was damaged. 

The crew had left Annapolis, Maryland, on Saturday and was headed to Miami when they became caught in the storm 100 miles off North Carolina's Cape Lookout. 

The commanding officer of the Coast Guard Cutter Escanaba, Capt. Michael Turdo, praised his crew, saying the situation "could have quickly taken a turn for the worse" with deteriorating weather.