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Oregon firefighters rescue teen from Pacific Ocean

SEASIDE, Ore. (KPTV) — A high surf advisory remains in place till 10 p.m. Wednesday night. The National Weather Service put the advisory out on Tuesday saying large waves and hazardous surf conditions could be expecting with seas build to 20 to 25 ft.

Wednesday afternoon the government agency issued a Beach Hazards Statement asking beach goers to be vigilant of sneaker waves. The NWS said the statement would be in place until late Thursday.

The Pacific Ocean has been rough along Oregon and SW Washington. Monday, first responders in Seaside rescued a 17-year-old young man from the ocean.

Seaside Fire Dept. said they were called to the area of the Necanicum River on a report of a child and man in the water.

David Rankin, a Division Chief with Seaside Fire, said he was at home off duty when the call came in. He rushed to scene and met other first responders there. He said they were able to talk with the dad of the teen who told them his son had been washed out to sea.

Rescuers were able to spot the teen possibly stuck on a sand bar about 500 yards offshore.

Rankin said he put on his wet suit and they made the decision to go after the boy.

“It was rough that day but it wasn’t a huge swell,” Rankin said. “My whole goal was just hopefully get out there and find him and at least get to him so that I had him in my reach.”

He adds the teen was hypothermic and getting pulled in different directions by the high surf and tide.

Rankin said he got into the river channel and let the current take him out to the boy.

“I just popped up and I looked and he was just 100 yards north of me and I was like oop he is right there.”

The two would make contact and Rankin gave him something to float on. The next task was to get both of them to shore.

“I wasn’t sure we were going to make it in honestly,” Rankin said. “My second plan was to have, to wait for the Coast Guard helicopter to pick both of us up because once I had him safe I knew we could float for little longer.”

The pair however felt strong enough to try and swim back to the shore. They made it and the teen was taken to the hospital.

First responders said he’s one of the lucky ones because the ocean can be unforgiving. They want to remind those headed to the Oregon coast this winter to be mindful of the ocean’s power.

“You never want to turn your back to the ocean because you don’t know when the next wave is going to come in,” Rankin said.

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