Current takes three out to sea off Fort Worden beach; all safe now
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East Jefferson Fire-Rescue
Three people paddling in inner tubes were rescued and brought safely aboard an East Jefferson Fire-Rescue vessel Saturday after they were caught in a strong current and unable to return to shore.

Peninsula Daily News

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PORT TOWNSEND — A strong current swept away a family paddling on inner tubes in the water off the beach at Fort Worden State Park near the Port Townsend Marine Science Center on Saturday afternoon.

They were brought back to shore safely, said Patricia Willestoft, acting spokeswoman for East Jefferson Fire-Rescue, who did not name anyone involved.

A boy, 8, and a girl, 15, were paddling on inner tubes in the water near the Port Townsend Marine Science Center when the current caught them and they were unable to return to shore, Willestoft said.

Their mother paddled out on a third inner tube to get them and was also caught in the flow, the spokeswoman said.

East Jefferson Fire-Rescue was alerted at 3:08 p.m. A crew of three went out from Point Hudson Marina in Marine 1-6.

Two paddle boarders and the kayak concierge at Fort Worden reached the family first and helped prevent further drift until Marine 1-6 arrived.

They were taken aboard the fire department boat, where they were warmed and evaluated before they were discharged to go their own way.

Also responding to the call for help were park rangers, the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office marine vessel, Port Townsend Police and a fire department paramedic ambulance.

Assistant Chief Brian Tracer of the fire department “cautions everyone to be aware of the strong currents just off-shore in our area,” Willestoft said.

Last modified: August 09. 2014 8:59PM
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