KITTERY POINT, Maine — A U.S. Coast Guard rescue crew from Station Portsmouth Harbor rescued a kayaker Thursday afternoon near Wood Island at the mouth of the Piscataqua River after he capsized in the 43-degree water.
Coast Guard watchstanders learned of the overturned kayak off Kittery Point shortly after noon Thursday from a good Samaritan who saw the kayak from land.
A 47-foot Motor Lifeboat crew from Station Portsmouth Harbor was underway at the time conducting training near the capsized kayak and was able to locate the kayaker about five minutes later.
“When we pulled up to the kayak, we saw legs sticking out from under it,” Petty Officer 1st Class Amanda Christensen, the coxswain of the lifeboat, said. “He must have been breathing from a pocket of air in the kayak.”
The kayaker’s name and hometown were not immediately available.
The crew pulled the 34-year-old man, who was not wearing a life jacket at the time, aboard the lifeboat and treated him for hypothermia and shock. They used scissors from their first-aid kit to remove his cold, wet clothing.
“My crew acted quickly, using blankets to dry and warm the man up,” Christensen said.
The crew then took the man to a pier near the Coast Guard Station, where he was taken to awaiting Portsmouth Fire Department emergency medical services.
New Hampshire Marine Patrol also dealt with the call.
For safety tips for paddlers, visit Coast Guard News at coastguardnews.com.