SOUTH MILWAUKEE, Wis. - A man was rescued from Lake Michigan on Tuesday, April 13 after falling from his boat. He was in the 48-degree water for approximately 5-10 minutes before being rescued by fishermen.
According to officials, around 9 a.m. the South Milwaukee Fire Department's rescue boat, Guardian II, was requested by the Oak Creek Fire Department to respond to a report of a boat going in circles in Lake Michigan in the area of the We Energies Plant without a pilot.
While responding, the SMFD Rescue Boat was made aware of a private fishing boat that rescued an adult male out of the lake who was not wearing a personal flotation device and hanging onto a floating chair.
Upon arrival, officials found the boat circling without anyone on board. The pilot of the boat had fallen overboard and the boat continued to operate.
The boater estimated he was in the 48-degree water for approximately 5-10 minutes before being rescued by the fishermen.
Once contact was made with the fishing boat that rescued him, the boater was brought onboard the SMFD Rescue Boat and transported to Bender Park where he was transferred to the care of awaiting OCFD EMS personnel.
After transferring care of the boater to OCFD, the crew from the US Coast Guard requested the assistance of SMFD in securing the pilotless boat.
Eventually, after attempting several maneuvers to control the boat, a member of the USCG had to jump into the boat and take control of it.
At this time, the cause of the incident remains under investigation.