OCEAN CITY – In perhaps the first reported ocean swimmer in distress rescue of the season, an unidentified adult male was pulled from the ocean late Monday afternoon and was transported to the hospital for medical-related issues.
Around 3:40 p.m. on Monday, the Ocean City Fire Department (OCFD) responded to a reported swimmer in distress in the ocean in the area of 54th Street. Upon arrival at the scene, an OCFD rescue swimmer observed the victim in the ocean about 200 yards off the beach and entered the water.
The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) responded by vessel and picked up both the victim and the OCFD rescue swimmer and transported them to the U.S. Coast Guard station for an evaluation. The adult male victim was transported to Atlantic General Hospital for medical issues related to his time in the ocean, according to OCFD spokesperson Ryan Whittington. The OCFD rescue swimmer did not require any medical treatment.
It’s important to note the Ocean City Beach Patrol (OCBP), while out on the beach with a modest crew during the lead-up to season, is not yet manning lifeguard stands and watching the ocean for swimmers in distress. The OCBP will start manning stands in full force starting on Saturday.
The beach patrol will be manning the stands from 10 a.m. to 5:25 p.m. throughout the summer. The time-honored slogan of “Keep your feet in the sand until the lifeguard’s in the stand,” was evident during Monday’s incident.
“No one can swim better than an Ocean City lifeguard, so don’t risk it,” said Whittington. “Wait until they are on duty before you enter the ocean.”