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Coast Guard Helps Rescue Missing Kayaker Off Gloucester

'A life jacket really saved this man's life,' a Coast Guard official said

missing kayak
USCG/Petty Officer 2nd Class Nicole Groll

A man whose kayak overturned Saturday floated in four-foot seas for about three hours before Coast Guard and harbormaster crews found him off Gloucester, Massachusetts.

"A life jacket really saved this man's life," said the duty public affairs officer for Sector Boston. 

Coast Guard officials say a good Samaritan reported seeing an overturned orange kayak near Salem Channel at 2:24 p.m. Shortly after, the wife of the missing kayaker called to report that her husband had not returned at the expected time.

Two rescue boat crews from Station Gloucester and crews from the Salem and Beverly Harbormasters were launched. When crews arrived on scene, they found the kayak with a dry bag containing a set of keys and a t-shirt.

After searching for about an hour, the Beverly Harbormaster rescue crew found the kayaker wearing a life jacket near House Island.

The water temperature was 66 degrees and winds were about 20 knots, officials say.

The man's kayak was not labeled, according to Coast Guard officials who did not identify the kayaker.

If you are going out on a kayak, the Coast Guard recommends you check the weather, tell someone where you are going and when you will be back, wear a lifejacket, have a sound-making device, and label your kayak. Also, if you are paddling at night, make sure you have a light.

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