A lobsterman was rescued this morning 43 miles off the coast of Long Island after being lost at sea for more than 11 hours.
According to Yahoo News, John Aldridge went overboard late last night while moving a cooler at the back of the 44-foot Anna Mary. The crew didn’t realize that he was missing until they woke up the following morning.
A massive search, involving Coast Guard crews from New York, New Jersey, Conencticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts, was conducted over 770-square miles. Aldridge was found drifting in the Atlantic Ocean by a Coast Guard hospital and was air lifted to Cape Cod where he was treated for dehydration and hypothermia.
Aldridge said: “I went to move a cooler and the handle broke off and I fell off the back of the boat, just like that.”
The 43-year-old wasn’t wearing a life jacket when he went overboard but he was able to use his rubber boots to keep himself afloat during the ordeal. Aldridge said that he turned his boots upside down to create air pockets and then stuffed them underneath his arms.
Coast Guard Lt. Joe Klinker said: “This ending had a lot of people shaking hands and smiling. Reports of persons in the water often mean a difficult search is ahead. To hear the call that he was found and rescued makes it a proud day for those Coast Guard crews.”