The Coast Guard rescued a man from the chilly water near Rehoboth Bay on Saturday morning after his duck hunting boat overturned.
The 10-foot boat was anchored in Herring Creek when the hunter shifted his weight too quickly and tipped it. Water temperatures are in the 40s this week.
The man was able to call for help on his VHF radio, and the Coast Guard Station Indian River in Rehoboth Beach launched a 24-foot Special Purpose Craft-Shallow Water rescue boat crew.
Coast Guard members pulled the man from the water and towed his boat to shore, where emergency crews were waiting for him. He’s expected to be fine.
The Coast Guard reminds fishermen and waterfowl hunters to always wear a life jacket and have a reliable communication device, like a VHF radio.
“This time of year, temperature can really impact a rescue. The life jacket will increase your odds of staying afloat if something happens, and the radio will help us to zero in on you quickly,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Wakeley, the coxswain of the rescue boat.
USCG also urges hunters and fishermen to file a float plan with someone on shore, which can be as simple as letting a friend or family member know where they’re going and when they expect to be back. For tech-savvy boaters, the Coast Guard has a free mobile app that allows boaters to register information about their boats to help rescuers during an emergency, then file an electronic float plan when they plan to go out.