On the afternoon of Sunday, May 18, 2014, a 17 year old male youth entered Lake Ontario in a small one-seat watercraft which he had constructed from plans obtained on the Internet.
The youth did not wear a PFD, and was being observed by his brother from the shore.
The youth was caught up in the current and began drifting east about 1/2 km off the shore. At that point, rough water caused him to bail out of the craft into the cold water, which was estimated to be about 43 degrees Fahrenheit. By this time, he had drifted offshore to the area of Durham Road in Grimsby.
Fortunately, a local resident had noticed the watercraft and the saw the youth go overboard. She immediately called 9-1-1, and summoned her husband who paddled out to the youth in his kayak with a life jacket while she swam out to the male with a life jacket.
The husband in the kayak reached the youth first. He gave the youth the life jacket and a rope and towed him to shore. Once ashore, the youth was treated by paramedics, and was transported to the West Lincoln Memorial Hospital in Grimsby to be treated for exposure.
The youth was conscious and coherent throughout the ordeal but was struggling and calling for help when rescued.
The Niagara Regional Police want to remind people of the inherent danger of entering the water without a PFD.