Swimmer rescued near Pigeon Point boat landing

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Rescue crews from several agencies worked together Wednesday morning to save a swimmer who was swept away in the current from the Pigeon Point Boat Landing.

Rescuers were called to the boat ramp by witnesses who reported seeing a swimmer in the water in trouble.

They were able to spot the swimmer about half way between the boat ramp and Albergotti Creek. He was wearing a life jacket and waving his hands for help.

Because the current is so strong in that area, rescue crews were also sent to the Downtown Marina and the Woods Memorial Bridge in case he made it that far.

The Marine Air Corps Station Beaufort has a boat launch near by and was able to make it to the man first and bring him back to the boat landing where an ambulance was waiting.

He was reportedly shivering and very cold. The incident commander said with water temperatures in the low 70's, being in the water for an extended period of time can allow hypothermia to set in.

The swimmer told officials that he lived on a sailboat and when he woke up this morning saw his kayak had drifted into the marsh.

He went into the water to try to retrieve it but was swept away by the current. Bystanders heard him calling for help and they called 9-1-1.

Beaufort Police, Beaufort County EMS, Beaufort Marine Rescue Squadron, Marine Corps Fire Departments from Beaufort and Parris Island, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and the Beaufort/Port Royal Fire Department all responded.

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