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

Canadian Coast GuardSearch and RescueTofino,ucluelet

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Revelstoke rallies to save snared eagle

Local climber scales tree to save the raptor

Petition to protect Mt. Begbie goes to the province

Petition calls for no development on the mountain until new land use plans created for Revelstoke

Revelstoke Fire Rescue Services douses house fire Aug. 7

Investigators say probable cause was an unattended barbecue

UFO trackers set their sights on Revelstoke skies

Rob Freeman UFO World Explorer and crew went up Sale Mountain

Updated: Molotov cocktails thrown at Revelstoke home in arson attempt

The flames were extinguished before they spread. Two men have been arrested.

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

COVID-19 outbreak at South Okanagan farm declared over

There continues to be other community exposure events in the Interior Health region

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

COVID-19 exposure alert at Cactus Club in downtown Kelowna

Interior Health also announced another three cases of COVID-19 tied to Kelowna, bringing the total to 161

Most Read