Fire department crews rescued a woman who was on a boat in distress that began taking on water on Lake Michigan in Winthrop Harbor Sunday afternoon.
The Winthrop Harbor Fire Department responded around 3 p.m. Sunday to the area of SkipperBud’s at 215 North Point Drive for a report of a water rescue.
Fire officials said it was reported that a boat was taking on water and in distress.
The fire department deployed their rescue boat and located the boat in distress against the breakwater outside of the marina.
A man who was on the boat climbed onto the break wall prior to the arrival of rescuers.
Fire crews found a woman was still on the boat, which was quickly taking on water.
Rough conditions led to the fire department boat not being able to get close to the distressed boat, fire officials said.
A rescuer, who donned a water rescue suit, was tethered to the fire department boat and swam to the boat in distress.
The rescuer got onto the boat with the female occupant, fire officials said.
Fire crews determined the safest action would be to have a tow boat pull the distressed boat to the harbor due to the waves and slippery rocks on the break wall.
A second rescue crew was able to walk the break wall close to the distressed boat where they were able to throw another flotation suit to the distressed boat so the female occupant could use it.
TowBoatUS was able to get the boat, rescuer and female occupant to safety. The U.S. Coast Guard Sector Lake Michigan also assisted.
The fire department said they remind everyone to check water conditions and ensure they have the required safety equipment prior to going on Lake Michigan.