At about 6 p.m. on March 26, RCAF Cormorant helicopter rescued four individuals stranded on Lovekin Rock at Long Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Approach by boat to Lovekin was ruled too dangerous due to sea state, according to the JRCC Victoria. (Sophie L’Homme Photo)

Four stranded by surging seas on a rock off Tofino

Rescue chopper lifts a walker and three boogie boarders to safety after two hours at Long Beach

Four people spent about two hours trapped by surging seas on a large rock off Long Beach yesterday before being rescued unharmed by an air force chopper.

Three boogie boarders and walker who misjudged the tides were pulled off Lovekin Rock in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, south of Tofino at about 6 p.m., March 26, by an Royal Canadian Air Force Cormorant out of Comox.

“It’s a bit of a strange case,” Maritime Forces Pacific public affairs officer Lieut. Melissa Kia told the Westerly News.

“Originally, there were three walkers that went out to Lovekin Rock during the low tide, the tide came in and they couldn’t get off the rock. Two of them decided to swim to shore and the third person ruled that it was too risky,” she said.

Approach by boat to the rock was ruled too dangerous due to the state of the sea, and Canadian Coast Guard Tofino 1 rescue boat crews advised the stranded walker to remain in place while the RCAF helicopter arrived on scene, states a release issued by Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre (JRCC) Victoria.

“This is where the case takes a bit of a twist,” said Kia. “Apparently there were three boogie boarders in the area and they were also subsequently stranded due to the degrading sea conditions; so not able to jump off [Lovekin] because the waves crashing into it were much too big.”

The stranded walker and three boogie boarders awaited the arrival of the helicopter and all four of them were hoisted off the rock.

“Everybody was fine,” Kia said.

Kia encouraged beachgoers to check the tides and know the timings, adding JRCC Victoria responds to over 3,000 cases a year.

“While Mother Nature is beautiful, it can also turn. Just be aware of your surroundings and try to be as safe as possible,” she said.

Last year, there were two fatal accidents at Long Beach. Nijin John, a 24-year-old research student at the University of Victoria, was killed in a surfing accident on Feb.10 off Lovekin Rock. During the May Long weekend, an ocean accident off Long Beach claimed the life of 52-year old Ann Wittenberg, who was in town for her daughter’s wedding.

EDITORIAL: Restore the Surf Guard program at Long Beach

READ: Ucluelet paddle boarder calls for lifeguards on Long Beach after rescue at Lovekin Rock

Just Posted

Third delivery of building units for 222 Corfield in Parksville arrives April 26

Vehicles should expect intermittent, single-lane alternating traffic

City of Parksville to look into cost, process of beach cleanup

Cleanup would include removing rotten logs, adding sand

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

RCMP ask Parksville Qualicum Beach businesses for help battling thieves

‘With your assistance forensic evidence could be located for prosecution’

Early morning break-in at Parksville Dairy Queen

Oceanside RCMP said incident occurred at 1:50 a.m. on April 17

It was no Kentucky Derby: B.C. girls host foot-long snail race

Two Grade 3 students in White Rock put four snails to the test in a hotly-contested street race

Howe Sound Queen sailing toward retirement

Vessel now up for auction ends regular runs between Crofton and Vesuvius at the beginning of June

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Most Read