Coast Guard rescues man after 5 hours in water near Apollo Beach

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Coast Guard rescued a 43-year-old man Monday around midnight after he fell from his vessel Sunday around 6 p.m. and spent five hours treading water near Apollo Beach, Fla.

Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg watchstanders received a call from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office around 10 p.m. reporting a 31-foot Sea Ray sport boat was aground on Apollo Beach with the engine running in neutral and no sign of anyone aboard.

A 25-foot smallboat crew from Coast Guard Station St. Petersburg and an HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater, Fla., were launched to search the area for a possible missing boater.

After about two hours of searching, Michael Farmer, of Brandon, Fla., was located clinging to a rear range light about 1.5 miles west of Apollo Beach.

Farmer was not wearing a life jacket and appeared to be in stable condition. He was transferred to Apollo Beach Marina.

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