Six people were repatriated to Cuba and four others were transported to Florida for medical treatment after the Coast Guard rescued them off a sinking boat about 40 miles from Key Largo.
A photo released by the Coast Guard shows the migrants in a vessel that had taken on water.
“They didn’t have lifejackets or safety equipment,” Capt. Shawn Koch, commanding officer at Air Station Miami, said in a statement on Saturday.
“If the air crew hadn’t found them on the patrol, these people would not have survived the night.”
COAST GUARD CONDUCTS ‘MASS RESCUE’ OF STRANDED SNOWMOBILERS AFTER ICE BREAKS ON LAKE ERIE
The Coast Guard repatriated 119 people to Cuba on Jan. 3 after stopping them on multiple vessels in the south Florida Straits.
The number of Cubans trying to enter the U.S. plummeted during the coronavirus pandemic, with just 49 Cuban migrants stopped in fiscal year 2020. That number shot back up last year though as 838 Cuban migrants were stopped by the Coast Guard in fiscal year 2021.
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Two weeks ago, the Coast Guard rescued one man from a ship that had capsized in the Gulf Stream after setting out for Florida from Bimini, an island in the Bahamas.
The lone survivor told investigators that 39 other people were originally on board the vessel. The Coast Guard called off the search days later after finding five bodies.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.