Firefighters save young woman swept away by the tide at the Beaufort day dock
The joint efforts of multiple local agencies and resources helped to save the life of a woman swept away by fast moving water at the downtown Beaufort day dock.
At approximately 6 pm last night, the City of Beaufort/Town of Port Royal Fire Department, Lady’s Island/St. Helena Fire Department, and Beaufort Water Search and Rescue responded to a report of a female in the water at the downtown Beaufort day dock. Acting Battalion Chief Ryan Goller arrived on scene to the Downtown playground parking area and had a visual of the female in the water drifting quickly towards the Old Point of Beaufort. The patient had already gone under water several times from the current pushing her.
“In water emergencies we quickly assess tides and current to best determine intercept points for the patient in the water. Resources are spread out to those points to give us the best opportunity to perform a rescue” said Battalion Chief Ross Vezin.
Firefighters from the City of Beaufort/Town of Port Royal Fire Department were able to access a dock in the Old Point off Port Republic Street. Firefighters then had a visual on the patient from the dock and tossed multiple water rope rescue bags to the patient. Firefighters from Lady’s Island/St. Helena Fire Department were able to board a good Samaritans boat to help access the patient by water. With the patient still in the water and the current bringing her under water, Firefighter Jason Garber, Firefighter Zakary Morgan, and Firefighter Gerald LaHay jumped in the water to grab the patient as she was coming by the dock. With the current moving quickly, the firefighters had difficulty making it to the patient but with the help of a water rescue rope firefighters were able to get her on the rope and on the dock.
Firefighters and law enforcement assisted the patient onto the dock and then evaluated and given medical care by Beaufort County EMS.
“The joint response from the City of Beaufort/Town of Port Royal Fire Department, Lady’s Island/St. Helena Fire Department, and Beaufort Water Search and; Rescue worked as planned when all three agencies were dispatched simultaneously to the incident. This allows for multiple agencies and resources to come from various directions” said Battalion Chief Ross Vezin.
Beaufort/Port Royal Fire Department, Lady’s Island/St. Helena Fire Department, Beaufort Water Search and Rescue, City of Beaufort Police Department, Beaufort County Sheriffs Office, and Beaufort County EMS all responded to the incident.