UPDATED: Greenwich Police Rescue Kayaker Near Great Captain’s Island

Update: According to Lt Kraig Gray, the rescue of an adult female distressed kayaker took place around 11:15am.

Gray said that the woman,who is from Greenwich went into the water with a wet suit, which he said takes time to keep you warm, whereas a dry suit excludes the water altogether.

“There were some choppy waves that for a small craft made it likely the boat capsized,” he added. “They had a lot of safety precautions put in this place, but they needed just one more – a dry suit.”

Gray said the woman was treated for hypothermia, after she got swamped and soaked.

Original Story: Sunday, March 19.  On Saturday Greenwich Police responded to a Mayday distress call over the VHF radio channel 16 about a person in the water who had fallen out of a kayak due north of Great Captain’s Island.

Greenwich Police Dispatch and the Coast Guard responded by radio.

Sgt. Sean O’Donnell and Sgt. Michael O’Conner Sr arrived via Police Boat 125 and located the kayaker in distress along with two other kayakers approximately 200 yards north of Great Captain’s Island.

By the time police arrived, the kayaker was in the water partially aboard a kayak and appeared to be potentially hypothermic and exhausted.

Police removed the kayaker and transported the victim to the Indian Harbor Yacht Club were Greenwich Emergency Medic Service (GEMS) was awaiting.

The victim was treated and rapidly transported by GEMS to Greenwich Hospital with a low body temperature.

According to Greenwich Police in a Facebook post on Saturday afternoon, the patient was treated and released.

The other two kayakers were able to paddle into Byram Harbor without any further incident.

Although everyone has had enough of the snow, the conditions were not favorable to kayaking on Saturday.

All kayakers were fit and experienced, but water temperatures would require a dry suit.

Police recommend visiting Paddling.com for information about kayaking. The below is an excerpt from their safety bulletin.


Kayaking can be a remarkably safe and user-friendly activity but situations can become very serious, very fast.

It’s important to understand the risks and hazards involved with kayaking and assume a conservative and safety conscious attitude when making decisions on the water.

1) Don’t drink alcohol and paddle.
2) Always wear a life jacket on the water.
3) Always dress for the conditions. Cold water represents the biggest hazard because immersion in cold water can quickly lead to hypothermia. Now if you are going to be paddling in cold or cooler water, you need to be more conservative with all your decisions and you need to paddle in calm conditions, close to shore and never alone.
4) Choose an appropriate paddling location for your skill level.