A Sayville man vacationing in North Carolina died Friday after being pulled unconscious from the Atlantic Ocean, the National Park Service said.
He and at least six people swimming, including a child, were frolicking off at the Cape Hatteras National Seashore in Avon and were about 30 feet from shore when the rip currents started pulling them farther into the ocean just before 3:30 p.m., park officials said. The Hatteras Island Rescue Squad was on one of its patrols when members noticed swimmers in distress and sent out watercraft even before witnesses called 911, the servcice said.
Bystanders, including a surfer, also helped bring the swimmers to shore, said Boone Vandzura, the park's chief ranger, and members of the rescue squad found the Sayville man unconscious when they pulled him onto their craft.
The swimmer never regained consciousness despite resuscitation efforts on shore, he said. The others were recovering, the park service said.
"Our thoughts are with the friends and family of the victim," Vandzura said.
The victim was vacationing with his family and had rented a beachouse, Vandzura said. But he and the other swimmers were not using flotation devices, officials said.
The Sayville man's death was the fourth swimming-related fatality at the park this year, park officials said. They advise swimmers to learn about the daily rip currents report before going out into the ocean and to have a flotation device, such as a boogie board or an inner tube, if they venture into ocean waters near the shoreline.