UPDATED: Man Rescued from Piscataqua River
Man who was in distress pulled to safety by passing fishing boat.
UPDATED, 3:57 p.m.:
A 27-year-old Massachusetts man who was playing fetch with his two dogs at the Peirce Island dog park on Monday afternoon found himself and one of his dogs in serious trouble.
According to Portsmouth Deputy Fire Chief Steve Achilles, the man saw that one of his dogs was being pulled up the Piscataqua River by the strong currents and he tried to go in and save the small mixed breed dog.
Achilles said the man suddenly found himself in the current and could not get back to shore. Portsmouth Firefighters received a 9-11 call from the man's wife around 2 p.m. and Achilles said the Portsmouth Fire Water Rescue boat was dispatched from the NH State Pier and firefighters mustered at Peirce Island.
By 2:15 p.m., Achilles said firefighters made contact with the man after a passing fishing boat had pulled him to safety. Achilles said the man "was cold and a little tired, but otherwise he was okay."
He said the man refused medical treatment from Portsmouth paramedics at the scene and refused transport to Portsmouth Regional Hospital. The man's small mixed breed dog was also okay, he said.
Achilles said firefighters have gone to the Peirce Island dog park for similar calls in the past and either dogs or their owners end up in distress when they end up in the water. Oftentimes, people who are not from the area don't realize how strong the river currents are.
“People need to respect the current," Achilles said. “It’s very challenging to not go in and rescue a dog, but if you do you can become a victim themselves.”
The best thing for people to do if they see someone in distress in the water is to call 9-11 and let the fire department do their job before they have the training and the proper equipment.
Earlier story: A man who fell into the Piscataqua River on Monday afternoon was rescued by a passing fishing boat, according to emergency communications.
Portsmouth firefighters were notified the man was in the water around the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge around 2 p.m. and firefighters boarded the department's fire rescue boat.
Less than an hour later, the man was being evaluated by Portsmouth Fire EMTs on Peirce Island after he was pulled out of the river by a fishing boat, according to emergency communications.
Portsmouth Patch will have more information about this story as it becomes available.