A Sunday afternoon helicopter rescue on the waters of Tomales Bay has yielded some video from the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office, who lent the efforts of their helicopter known as Henry-1 to Marin County’s Fire Department to ensure four kayakers made it safely back to shore.
The majestic waters of the Pacific Ocean, and it’s beautiful Bay Area inlets and bays, make for incomparable scenery, but as we learn several times a year, their tides can also be deadly. And it nearly came to another grisly outcome on Sunday, as the Chronicle reports that four kayakers were nearly swept to sea sometime after 2:30 p.m., though were rescued when a helicopter from the neighboring Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office picked them up and flew then safely to land.
The video above was posted to Facebook, and depicts the rescue, or rather the period just after the four kayakers had been pulled from their boats. (Two of the endangered kayakers were little boys!) The video, which all parties consented to being made public, is from the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office, taken on board their Bell 407GHP helicopter known as “Henry-1.”
Per the Chronicle, a bystander saw the kayaks encountering difficulty in the rough waters Sunday afternoon, and alerted the Marin County Fire Department. That department put in a mutual aid response to the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office, resulting in the all-ends-well rescue shown in the video.
As the Chronicle notes, “In the video, the two boys were smiling and seemed to be enjoying the helicopter ride more than the two adults.” That’s funny, but also consistent with rescues. “We often find that the kids are excited by the helicopter and being part of the rescue,” Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Misti Wood told the Chronicle.
Wood added that there is no charge to those who are rescued in these situations, and the the stranded kayaks were also recovered.