Sunday, September 1, 2013

False Alarm

Next Swim:  Labor Day Monday September 2nd Noon

Last Swim: Sunday 9/1, 8AM
Water Temp: 67
Waves: Gentle Rollers
Water Clarity: Variable
Crew: Eric & friend, Gigi & friend, Lorraine, David, Kahuna, Cap'n, Patriarch
Wetsuit/Skin Count: 7/2

 I was standing on the beach having just completed an awesome swim to flat rock when two fire fighters came running down the beach, responding to a "swimmer in distress" call made by a lady somewhere on shore.  She estimated the swimmer in trouble to be 1,000 feet offshore.

But all our swimmers were either on shore or visible returning to the beach.  None was in any kind of distress, and if they had been they could have simply stood up and walked to shore as they were in shallow water close to shore, no where close to 1,000 feet out.

So it's not clear what prompted the call, but the response was massive.  The North Shore Fire and Rescue had men and women at several points on the shore.  The Rescue squad, the Sheriff and Coast Guard all had boats in the water, and the Coast Guard helicopter was in the air.   After speaking with us, the alert was called off.

I can only come up with two possible explanations:  a) someone else besides us (swimmer, kayaker, surfer, paddle boarder) was in the water although we didn't see anyone or b) something we did or said was misinterpreted to be a distress signal.

Perhaps we should be more careful about what we say and do.  No waving arms, no jokes about missing swimmers, no saying "I don't see so and so", etc.  Anything that might lead someone on shore to think we had a problem.

Anyhow, other than that, it was a great swim.  Lorraine completed her first "Big Bay and Back" swim.  Ted and Kahuna also did Big Bay and Back, although Kahuna's achievement has been challenged by Lorraine and Cap'n on the grounds that he stopped 100 meters short.  I wasn't there, so I'm staying out of it.  The rest of us made flat rock or close to it.      


8 comments:

Kahuna said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Flora's Running Partner said...

I saw the head line on JSOnline and thought, "I think I know who that is." Well at least it is a story that will live in infamy.

Lorraine said...

Here's the jsonline piece - makes it sound like we are at fault:
http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/lake-michigan-swim-outing-sparks-mistaken-rescue-response-b9988691z1-222010811.html

No mention of the person on shore who called the "emergency" in.

Gumdrop said...

What kind of looniness is this? I can barely wait ta get the full skinny.

Waterbug08 said...

this is crazy! also cannot wait to here the whole story. missed it due to church (too much sinning this week!) but went by after and had a lovely and emergency-free swim to 3/4 piers and back.

Waterbug08 said...

this is crazy! missed it due to being at church (too much sinning this week!) but look forward to hearing about it. went by after and had a lovely/uneventful swim to 3(4?) piers and back.

Kahuna said...

Terrible story. The least the fire department could have done is mentioned that Kru members were grateful for the response and brought them donuts later. Would have been nice too if the writer would have contacted Ted, and found out that the Kru engages in open water swimming just about every day.

michele mccormack said...

Hi,
We were trying to get reaction from swimmers on Diana Nyad swimming from Cuba to Florida.

Anyone available to talk with CBS 58?
Thanks for your consideration.

Michele McCormack
CBS 58 News
(414) 607-8139