Windsurfer rescued near San Mateo Bridge

SAN FRANCISCO – A stranded windsurfer was rescued Saturday south of the San Mateo Bridge after radioing the Coast Guard for help.

At 5:16 p.m., the windsurfer contacted the Coast Guard with his handheld VHF radio after losing his board in southern San Francisco Bay. Sector San Francisco Command Center personnel immediately issued an urgent marine information broadcast, notifying mariners in the area of the distressed windsurfer. A 25-foot response boat from Station San Francisco, an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Air Station San Francisco, a Coast Guard Auxiliary Mobile Unit, and the Foster City Fire Department were all dispatched to the scene.

Once on scene, the Auxiliary Mobile Unit directed a good Samaritan to the location of the distressed windsurfer. Once recovered, the good Samaritan transferred the windsurfer to awaiting EMS personnel in Coyote Point Marina were he was transported to Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City.

The successful recovery of the windsurfer was a direct result of his possessing a handheld VHF radio. Without the ability to contact the Coast Guard once losing his board, the execution of this case could have been hindered dramatically.

The Coast Guard urges all mariners and water enthusiasts to exercise caution when on the water. Ensure you have the proper safety equipment and file a float plan with a family member or loved one ashore letting them know your intentions. Filing a float plan can be just as easy as sending a text message to a friend or posting a status update on your social media account. The most important thing is that you are prepared and that someone ashore is aware of your intentions and planned return.

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