SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The Coast Guard says it has rescued 37 people from a fishing boat that capsized and sank in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Central America.

The agency said 12 Coast Guardsmen were inspecting a 160-foot Ecuadorian fishing boat on Wednesday when it began listing, forcing them and 25 members of the vessel to abandon ship.

Crew members of a Coast Guard cutter on patrol in the region quickly rescued 16 people while 20 others climbed up nets hung from the side of the cutter.

One man clung to the side of the sinking boat until he was rescued by a Coast Guard swimmer.

Capt. Arthur Snyder of the 11th Coast Guard District in Alameda, California, praised the cutter crew's speedy action during the dangerous situation.

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