Kayaker Rescued Off Kings Park Bluff

Members of the Kings Park Fire Department pulled a man, found clinging to his kayak, to safety Sunday evening.

A 23-year-old kayaker was rescued from the waters of the Nissequogue River Sunday evening by members of the Kings Park Fire Department.

Police said a bird watcher at Kings Park Bluff saw the man in the water and called 911.

According to Kings Park Fire Chief, Mark O’Brien, Nissequogue Fire Department received the call, at about 5:45, taking the lead on the rescue and responded by Short Beach in Smithtown. Kings Park Fire Department responded by the Kings Park Bluff along with Northport, launching a boat into the water.

O’Brien said a helicopter, dispatched by Suffolk County Police located the kayaker, who was about mile out from the bluff, at the mouth of the river and was clinging to his capsized kayak.

A boat, manned with Kings Park Fire Department members Greg Smith, Andrew Strain and Dan Hagstrom, who dove into the water, were able to pull the man to safety and take him back to shore.

“He had been out in the water for awhile,” said O’Brien. “Not sure how long. We got him onto the boat. He was put on a stretcher and taken to the hospital.”

The kayaker, who has not yet been identified, was taken by ambulance to St. Catherine of Siena Medical Center and was treated hypothermia.

Patch will update this story as more information becomes available.

Bern April 09, 2013 at 04:29 PM
Thank you to all that helped saved this persons life! We appreciate and applaud all that you do! To anyone that actually saw what happened? was the person wearing a life jacket, and wet suit? Did the person have an emergency safety kit which contains pump to get water out of kayak, whistle, and other important safety items. AND also important, was the kayak rated for the ocean? If the answer to any of these is NO then we have a safety training issue.
Let Them Eat Cake April 09, 2013 at 11:32 PM
Anybody notice that Missy completely ignored the bicycle analogy?
Mark April 11, 2013 at 12:38 AM
DITTO! It's all about the dollar not about safety with the canoe company and no regard to people's personal property such as their boats. When you want them to pay to have your boat repaired they look the other way and wave the waiver in our face. Obviously they surely don't teach their clients to stay away from people's boats that pay to be moored on the river. Good riddance!
Johnny Boom Bats April 13, 2013 at 09:56 AM
Bern, the kayaker was the only item that the rescue folks plucked from the frigid water and had in the boat when they came back to dock. This is more than a training issue. Unfortunately one cannot purchase or train for this thing called... common sense. You either have it or you don't. Was wondering what the outcome was. Hope he is OK.
Dan D April 13, 2013 at 02:47 PM
Every year as the weather warms, a lot of people venture out with their small paddle craft. They are not wearing PFD's or cold water immersion protection gear. The air may be warm but the water is near winter cold. The immediate effects of cold water immersion could be cardiac failure and death. If that doesn't happen, disorientation occurs from the cold water shock. Your body then attempts to keep the core warm by diverting blood from your outer extremities like arms and legs. As this occurs, you will lose the use of your arms and legs and you will not be able to swim or tread water. Hypothermia occurs when your body can no longer maintain core temperature and begins shutting down. That actually takes a while to occur depending on water temperature. A PFD will keep you above water and hopefully someone will come to your rescue before death from hypothermia occurs. Use common sense. Before you put your small boat in the water, jump in the water with the attire you will be wearing when you get in your boat. If that notion seems crazy to you because the water is too cold, then don't get in the boat because if you dump it that's where you will be. Seek out an organization like Long Island Paddlers. They can advise and educate you on what type of attire you will need for cold water immersion and just general safety procedures you should practice when venturing out on the water in small paddle craft.


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