PORTAGE, Alaska -- A kayaker escaped with mild hypothermia after being rescued by helicopter from a violent whirlpool off the coast of Alaska.
Sean Hickey, 19, was thrown from his boat Sunday by a wall of water caused by rapidly shifting tides in Turnagain Arm near Portage, The Anchorage (Alaska) Daily News reported.
A state police helicopter checking the popular tourist area spotted Hickey waving frantically from a whirlpool, the newspaper said.
"He was a half mile from the shore, out in one of the channels, flowing pretty quick. The tide was really running," rescue trooper Bryan Barlow told the Daily News.
Hickey was pulled into the helicopter suffering hypothermia but didn't need to be hospitalized. "He was definitely grateful we were able to get there quickly," Barlow said in the newspaper article.
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