County of Marin - News Releases - Water Rescues

For Immediate Release
April 24, 2015

Two Water Rescues on Tomales Bay

Separate incidents strand five people, prompting aid from helicopter

Woodacre, CA – Two separate incidents on Tomales Bay necessitated the water rescue of five people on April 24.

Shortly after 11:30 AM, two kayakers fell into the water just off Hog Island. Marin County Fire Department responded with the National Park Service and the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office helicopter, Henry 1, to conduct the rescue. One of the kayakers was lifted from the water by Henry 1 and brought to the shore near Nicks Cove. The other made it back into the kayak and was retrieved by a crew from the National Park Service.

Both kayakers were evaluated by Marin County Fire Department paramedics and determined not to need ambulance transport to the hospital. Both were in the water for about 30 minutes and were wearing life jackets.

“Water rescues are becoming more and more frequent,” said Mike Giannini, Battalion Chief with the Marin County Fire Department. “It’s critical that boaters and kayakers wear the proper safety gear before they encounter a problem. Had they not been wearing floatation devices, the outcome could have been very different.” 

In another incident about three hours later, a small inflatable boat with three people, including a 4-year-old, became disabled on a sandbar west of Lawson’s Landing near the mouth of Tomales Bay. They boaters were able to get out of the craft and wait on the sandbar until rescuers arrived. Henry 1 landed on the sandbar and flew the people back to the shore. They were also evaluated for hypothermia and determined not to need transportation to the hospital.

Winds were blowing steadily at 20 mph that day and played a part in both incidents. The identities of the parties were not immediately available.



Mike Giannini
Battalion Chief
Marin County Fire Department

33 Castle Rock Ave.
Woodacre, CA 94973
(415) 473-2595
Email: Mike Giannini
Marin County Fire website