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Lexington County firefighters and deputies on Lake Murray for water rescue

Chapin, SC (Paul Kirby) Firefighters and sheriff’s deputies were on Lake Murray near the end of Old Lexington Highway out of Chapin for a reported boater in distress call Monday afternoon. It wasn't clear from radio traffic if there was just one or several boaters involved. The first calls that were received were thought to be near Point View Road, but a boater was able to make it to land on Heimatsweg Road, located a house number, and called the 911 center to give their location.

There was originally some confusion at first as to the exact location of the boat. The calls were apparently coming from the choppy waters of the lake and the caller was trying to reference a road for rescuers to locate them from land. This entire area is what’s know as the “big water” of Lake Murray, an area that can be whipped into a frenzy with huge waves like an ocean when the wind is blowing as it is Monday afternoon. The lake was under a small craft advisory from the NWS.

At first, it was believed that all of the occupants of the boat had made it to land but the fire service confirmed by radio shortly after making contact with one of the boaters that they had moved into a water rescue operation. They didn't say if one of the boaters was in the water or if they were focusing on the boat itself. They also didn't confirm if they were dealing with one or more people. They had all of their special equipment for that type of operation enroute from the central part of the county. They also had requested boats from the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department and DNR which would be stationed on the opposite side of the lake at Bundrick Island. That would be a tough ride for the deputies, but their larger center console boats are made to withstand the pounding of the lake at its worst.

At approximately 6:10 p.m., the fire service’s special rescue team had arrived and was under the command of Battalion Chief #1. Other specialized equipment including their RIB boats were enroute.

At 6:52 p.m., the fire service commander on the scene reported that they had the boat on the land. He marked the scene under control.

Both Harrison Cahill, the county’s spokesman, and Captain Adam Myrick, spokesman for the sheriff’s department, said that they were monitoring their department’s participation in the situation. They both said they would try and release further information.

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