Coast Guard rescues swimmer near Dauphin Island, Alabama

A Coast Guard Station Dauphin Island 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boat crew rescues a swimmer near Dauphin Island, Alabama, August 13, 2020. The man had attempted an open water swim before getting caught in a current. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy asset)

A Coast Guard Station Dauphin Island 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boat crew rescues a swimmer near Dauphin Island, Alabama, August 13, 2020. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy asset)

NEW ORLEANS — The Coast Guard rescued an overdue swimmer off the southern tip of Pelican Island, Alabama, Thursday.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Mobile received a report around 5 p.m. from a woman whose husband tried to swim from the southern tip of Pelican Island to the Pelican Island Sandbar, nearly a mile away, and after an hour and a half had still not returned.

Watchstanders directed a Coast Guard Station Dauphin Island 45-foot Response Boat-Medium boat crew to the vicinity, and the crew was able to locate the man in the water. The man, who was not wearing a life jacket, reported he had become caught in a current that he could not swim out from.

“This swimmer is fortunate, and it was prudent he had a loved one on the beach who was familiar with his swim plan,” said Cmdr. Kara Lavin, search and rescue mission coordinator at Coast Guard Sector Mobile. “We advise that everyone tells a friend or family member their plans when open water swimming. The currents can catch people off-guard, and the absence of a life jacket put this swimmer at serious risk.”

The boat crew brought the man to the station, where he was evaluated by EMS and is in stable condition. Dauphin Island Fire and Rescue assisted with a beach search.

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