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A spear fisherman was rescued by the Coast Guard after being stranded in rough waters off the coast of the U.S. Virgin Islands during a tropical storm on Sunday, dramatic video shows.

The Coast Guard sent a crew of the boat and an MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter to the scene near Dog Island after receiving a distress call at 8:30 am from the man’s friend, who was on a nearby boat.

Tropical Storm Earl dropped heavy rains in the Leeward Islands, the United States and the British Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico over the weekend and is expected to turn into a hurricane by the end of the week.

A crew of an MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter deployed a rescue swimmer to secure the fisherman in a harness.
(Coast Guard)

The crew tried to carry a lifting line to the injured man, but six-foot waves prevented them from getting close enough to save him, so a rescue swimmer lined up from the helicopter and used a harness to protect the fisherman.

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The injured survivor, who is over 50, was transported to Schneider Regional Medical Center in St. Thomas for treatment.

“This was a challenging case in a tropical storm with heavy seas, gusts of wind and poor visibility, but this is what the Coast Guard trains for,” said Lt. Shea Smith, commander of the MH-60T Jayhawk aircraft. in the accident, in a statement.

“Fortunately, the survivor was able to hold out until we arrived, and we’re all glad he’s safe.”

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The rescue took place near Dog Island, southeast of St. Thomas.

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