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Published: Tuesday, June 11, 2019 @ 12:18 PM
By: Breaking News Staff
OAK ISLAND, North Carolina — A Dayton-area boy is safe after rescue crews rushed to help him from an inflatable raft in the ocean off Oak Island, N.C., last week.
"We've rescued dozens of these things over the years, and this is the first time there was actually a little kid attached to it,” said Oak Island Water Rescue Chief Tony Young.
Young said the raft acted like a sail and the boy was unable to stop it, leading to him being stranded in the ocean.
“They immediately called 911 when they realized they couldn't reach him, and they also told him to stay on the float. A lot of the time, people get in trouble if they abandon ship and try to swim back,” Young said.
The incident happened at the beach last Monday.
Water rescue crews don’t discourage anyone from using these types of inflatable floats, but do say it’s important to either anchor them or have a parent hold onto a line attached to the device.
Oak Island Water Rescue had a rescue boat in the water less than 15 minutes after the call for help came in. The rescue team is made up of volunteers, Young said they do this because they want to help.
"Handing that little kid back to his mom after we brought him in from way out in the ocean on that float was payment enough for all of us. I'm sure I speak for the whole team when it comes to that,” Young said.