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Contact: Boone Vandzura, 252-475-8307
This afternoon, a 48 year old male died while swimming in the Atlantic Ocean off Cape Hatteras National Seashore (Seashore) in Avon, North Carolina.
- 911 call for multi-person water rescue was received at 3:28 pm.
- The ocean swimmers in distress were located in front of Ocean Isle Loop in Avon, North Carolina.
- Hatteras Island Rescue Squad, through their proactive beach patrols, had begun the process of bringing swimmers back to the beach using jet skis even before the 911 call was received. A bystander on a surfboard also assisted with the rescue by bringing one swimmer to safety. At least six people were brought back to the beach.
- A 48 year old male visiting from Sayville, New York, received CPR on the beach by Hatteras Island Rescue Squad, but efforts were unsuccessful. He was the only fatality during this incident.
- None of the swimmers were using flotation devices.
- Hatteras Island Rescue Squad, Dare County Emergency Medical Services, Dare County Sheriff’s Office, and National Park Service Rangers all responded to the incident.
- There was a moderate risk of rip currents near the Avon area today. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) considers a moderate risk to mean that “wind, wave, and tide conditions support the development of stronger or more frequent rip currents along the beaches. Only experienced surf swimmers who know how to escape rip currents should enter the water.”
- This is the fourth swimming-related fatality off the Seashore this year. There were seven swimming-related fatalities in 2017 and eight in 2016.
"We extend our sympathy to the victim's family. This tragic event is a very sad reminder of the dangers posed by rip currents,” said Superintendent David Hallac.