Coast Guard rescues pair in tandem kayak off Dungeness Spit

Two kayakers beset by high winds and heavy seas were rescued southeast of Dungeness spit on March 28, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

The two people, who were not identified by the Coast Guard, were rescued from a tandem kayak by a crew in a 45-foot response boat from Coast Guard Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles.

They were treated for symptoms of exhaustion at John Wayne Marina in Sequim.

“They were stable when transferred to EMS care,” said Petty Officer Michael Clark, Coast Guard District 13 spokesman.

Two others in another tandem kayak were able to paddle to shore, Clark said.

The four-person party battled winds of 35 to 45 knots and 4-foot seas when a Good Samaritan reported they were struggling to make headway near the tip of Dungeness Spit at about 1:15 p.m., Clark said.

“The weather was pushing them offshore eastward toward open water,” Clark said in a March 29 interview.

The Coast Guard diverted an Air Station Port Angeles MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew, which was conducting routine operations at Boeing Field in Seattle, in addition to the 45-foot response boat, Clark said.

The boat crew arrived from Port Angeles at about 2:30 p.m. and rescued the two kayakers, both of whom were wearing life jackets, and delivered them to John Wayne Marina shortly before 3 p.m.

“The Coast Guard urges anyone venturing out onto the water to be prepared for worst-case scenarios,” Clark said.

“Always wear life jackets, and always have a reliable means of communication in case of emergency.

“And, as always, be aware of the weather forecast and make smart decisions,” Clark added.

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