Three rescued after waves flip personal watercraft

Becky Vargo • Jul 7, 2019 at 7:10 PM

Three people on a personal watercraft were rescued after the vessel flipped over Sunday afternoon in large waves near the south pier head at Holland Harbor. 

The two adults and one child were taken aboard an Ottawa County Sheriff Marine Patrol boat and transported to shore for evaluation by paramedics. They were treated for fatigue and water ingestion.

The rented Sea-Doo was later recovered and transported back to land.

Emergency crews responded to a call for help at about 2:48 p.m. Sunday. Witnesses reported a Sea-Doo in distress at the end of the South Pier in Lake Michigan. Witnesses said the riders were struggling in the water with a partially submersed boat, said Sgt. Eric Westveer. 

The investigated showed that the people on the Sea-Doo realized that the water was too rough to get onto Lake Michigan. They attempted to turn back, but the waves rolled the vessel and all three aboard were thrown into the water. 

Westveer said that the marine patrol arrived and found the three struggling in the water. Rescue lines were used and the three were pulled aboard the patrol boat.

All three people were wearing life jackets, he said.

The Sheriff’s Office “would like to remind the public of the dangers of high wind and wave conditions on Lake Michigan when operating watercraft,” Westveer said. “We urge the public to be mindful of their boating ability and expertise before venturing out into high wave conditions.”


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