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By Matt Johnson and Alex Johnson

As black smoke billowed in the sky above the ocean, the Coast Guard and local police crews rescued a man, a woman and their dog after their sailboat caught fire Sunday morning off the New Jersey coast.

The Coast Guard received a mayday call just before 10:50 a.m. that a boat was on fire about 3 miles east of Ocean City, the agency said. The couple and the dog were retrieved from a small dinghy when Coast Guard and Ocean City police rescue crews arrived about 10 minutes later, it said.

NBC Philadelphia: Two People, Dog Escape Boat Fire Off Ocean City Coast

The 46-foot sailboat eventually sank, but its occupants were unhurt, the Coast Guard said. The cause of the fire remained unknown Sunday afternoon.

Smoke billows from a 46-foot sailboat that caught fire Sunday morning off Ocean City, New Jersey.Petty Officer 3rd Class David Micallef — U.S. Coast Guard