The U.S. Coast Guard on Monday rescued 14 of the 16 crew who abandoned the replica tall ship HMS Bounty while in the path of Hurricane Sandy off North Carolina, using helicopters to lift them from life rafts, the Coast Guard said.
The Coast Guard continued to search for the two missing crew members about 160 miles from the eye of the storm. Officials had previously reported 17 aboard but later revised the figure to 16.
The first of two MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters arrived on scene at about 6:30 a.m. (1030 GMT) and hoisted five people to safety, and a second helicopter arrived and rescued nine people, the Coast Guard said.
A C-130 Hercules aircraft was searching for the two missing crew members and a third rescue helicopter was on its way, the Coast Guard said.
"The 16 people donned cold water survival suits and life jackets before launching in two 25-man lifeboats with canopies," the Coast Guard said.
The tall ship was built for the 1962 movie "Mutiny on the Bounty" and lost power while at sea on Sunday night.