The Coast Guard rescued a commercial fisherman ffrom the water about six miles from where his boat capsized off Montauk Point on Saturday.
East Hampton Town police received a report and forwarded it to a communications watchstander from Coast Guard Station Montauk at about 4 p.m.
A 47-foot motor life boat rescue crew from Station Montauk diverted from training to the location and recovered a 52-year-old Montauk man from a life raft about 200 yards east of the lighthouse at 4:16 p.m., according to Coast Guard spokeswoman Petty Officer 2nd Class Jetta Disco.
He was sitting in the floatation device, which Disco described as a life ring that had netting in it. "I don't know how long he was floating," Disco said, adding that the rescue crew asked the man, but that he wasn't sure.
Once aboard the rescue boat, he received treatment for hypothermia. Disco said the air temperature was 38 degrees, and the water temperature was 47 degrees.
His 38-foot vessel, "Support," capsized and sank approximately six miles from Montauk Point, the Coast Guard said. The pot and trap fisherman, whose name was not released, reported being alone on the boat.
“The initial report came from a birdwatcher in the area who observed a person in the water that appeared to be hanging onto a life raft,” Petty Officer 2nd Class Brent Walsh, the 47-foot motor life boat operator, said in a statement. “Fortunately we were in the area conducting training at the time of the report and were able to quickly respond to the location of the person in the water, especially since we were quickly losing valuable daylight to search for the fisherman.”
The fisherman was brought back to the station, where the Montauk Fire Department's ambulance was waiting. He was transported to Southampton Hospital and was then was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital.
The cause of the incident is under investigation, according to the Coast Guard.
"He was very lucky. He was lucky he had some sort of floatation device," Disco said.
This summer, after an eight and a half hour search, the Coast Guard rescued a lobster fisherman, who went overboard while on a night watch off of Montauk Point. John Aldridge was spotted 43 miles south of Montauk Point, though his boat was five miles off Montauk when his fellow crew members reported him missing. With the help of other local fishermen, the Coast Guard searched a 660-square-mile area.