An off duty Coast Guardsmen rescued a kayaker beset by weather near Grays Harbor, Washington, Saturday.
Coast Guard Sector Columbia River watchstanders received a report of the kayaker in destress from local 911 dispatch stating that two kayakers were overcome by weather. One was able to make it back to shore, but the other could not make it.
The Coast Guard launched a 47-foot Motor Life Boat crew from Grays Harbor, but an off duty petty officer got there first in a private boat and secured the stranded paddler.
“This case illustrates the professionalism of our Coast Guard members,” said Chief Petty Officer Justin Urbano, a command duty officer at Sector Columbia River. “Even while off duty, our Coast Guardsmen and women are ready to respond to any report of trouble.”
Weather on scene at the time of the incident was reported as 15 mph winds and 8-foot seas – certainly not optimal kayaking weather. The Coast Guard always advises recreational boaters to be mindful of present, as well as extended weather and sea conditions, before venturing out.