Two men, one child saved from capsized boat

Two men and a child were rescued Saturday evening from San Francisco Bay after their boat capsized, according to Menlo Park Fire Protection District officials.

At 6:18 p.m., Coast Guard officials received a report of a 12-foot boat with three people aboard that had capsized in San Francisco Bay, just south of the Dumbarton Bridge. Coast Guard officials then requested help from the Menlo Park Fire Protection District.

At 7 p.m., crews arrived at Cooley Landing in East Palo Alto but were unable to locate anyone in the water off the landing.

A Coast Guard helicopter arrived and was able to locate two men and a boy in the water. They were wearing life jackets and hanging on to a camouflaged kayak piloted by another man on the Fremont side of the bay, fire officials said.

A Coast Guard rescue swimmer dropped from the helicopter and into the water. Two of the victims were hoisted up into the helicopter and flown to Cooley Landing where paramedics treated them for hypothermia.

The helicopter then returned to retrieve the third victim and the rescue swimmer. All three victims were taken to Stanford Hospital.

Fire officials learned that the three victims had launched their boat earlier in the day from the Don Edwards Estuary in Fremont and their boat capsized in the main channel due to the wind and high tide swell.

According to fire officials, another man in a kayak nearby called 911 to report the incident. He then let the three victims hold on to his kayak until rescuers arrived, fire officials said.

In a statement, Menlo Park Fire Protection District Chief Harold Schapelhouman said people often underestimate the tides, currents and winds in the bay.

Schapelhouman said:

“Despite being surrounded by an urban area of millions of people, it can be a very lonely and dangerous place if something goes wrong out in the cold waters of the San Francisco Bay.”

He added:

“These victims were very lucky! As usual, the Coast Guard did a fantastic job.”

A similar event occurred in the same area earlier this year. In January two men, one in a raft and another in a canoe, were in the water when the canoe capsized.

The victim in the raft was rescued, but the other victim went into the water. His body was found days later, fire officials said.