Missing boater treads water for nearly 2.5 hours before being rescued in Charleston Harbor

Charleston County News

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – A boater who went missing in Charleston Harbor tread water for over two hours before being rescued by first responders late Sunday night.

The Charleston Police Department said they were alerted to a possible missing boater around 9:45 p.m. Sunday and began searching an area between the Wappoo Creek and Fort Sumter.

Crews from the Charleston Fire Department, Charleston County Rescue Squad, Charleston County Sheriff’s Office, Charleston County EMS, SC Department of Natural Resources, and U.S. Coast Guard Sector Charleston assisted CPD in the search.

Officials with the Charleston Fire Department said the missing boater was located by a Coast Guard helicopter and pulled from the water by a Charleston Fire Department boat just before 10:00 p.m.

Crews said the 30-year-old boater was in the water for approximately two and a half hours and was not wearing a life jacket at the time.

“The successful rescue of the boater was due to a strong partnership among multiple agencies in our region and rapid coordination of assets under a unified command system,” said officials with the Charleston Police and Fire Departments.

Charleston Fire officials remind everyone to wear a life jacket while on the water, file a float plan in case of an emergency, and consider utilizing the USCG Boating Safety App to improve your safety.

“Despite challenging lighting conditions, the helicopter crew was able to visually locate the missing person and direct our partner boats to the location for a successful rescue,” said Lt. Cmdr Dan Blaich, Aircraft Commander with Coast Guard Air Station Savannah.

The boater was not identified.

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