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Dramatic rescue off Encinitas coast caught on camera

Posted at 6:36 PM, Apr 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-09 21:36:37-04

ENCINITAS, Calif. (KGTV) -- A dramatic rescue was all caught on camera on Tuesday of a man in distress aboard his sailboat off the coast of Encinitas.

The captain of the 30-foot sailboat made the distress call just before 6 p.m. that evening. Lifeguards say the boat was capsizing on the edge multiple times.

Two Encinitas lifeguards went out on a wave-runner to try and help the man. The Coast Guard also deployed a cutter to try and tow the sailboat and its captain to shore.

Captain Larry Giles from Encinitas Lifeguards says crews were quickly losing light and the stormy weather was getting worse, complicating the rescue.

Two attempts to tow the boat were unsuccessful so the lifeguards told the man to abandoned the sailboat and go on-board the wave runner.

A large wave eventually threw the two lifeguards and the man off the wave-runner. One lifeguard was able to grab the man in the water and swim to shore. The other was able to restart the wave runner and return to shore safely.

The boat washed ashore two days later. The man lived on the boat, so he was connected to the Red Cross to provide him a place to stay. No one was hurt.