A man whose small raft was swept into the ocean and flipped over by the outgoing tide in Netarts Bay, near Happy Camp, has not been located by search and rescue teams, according to the Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office.
Multiple search parties, including a Coast Guard helicopter, were launched after an emergency call arrived at 8:57 a.m. Tuesday, “but unfortunately, the man still has not been located,” officials said.
That morning, witnesses observed the man walking along the shoreline carrying an inflatable raft and two oars, officials said. He then paddled out into the fast-moving outgoing current and the raft quickly headed toward the mouth of the bay. The raft flipped over near the mouth of the bay, ejecting the man into the water, and the man disappeared underwater, police reports said.
“Netarts-Oceanside Fire-Rescue’s PWC’s were quickly launched and were able to recover the raft in the rough breakers, but the man could not be located,” TCSO Marine Deputy Dennis Greiner said in a news release. “The Coast Guard sent a helicopter and searched the area, but unfortunately, the man still has not been located.”
The Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office said it was an “ongoing investigation” and that more information would be released “when or if it is appropriate to do so.”
Zach Urness has been an outdoors reporter in Oregon for 15 years and is host of the Explore Oregon Podcast. To support his work, subscribe to the Statesman Journal. Urness is the author of “Best Hikes with Kids: Oregon” and “Hiking Southern Oregon.” He can be reached at zurness@StatesmanJournal.com or (503) 399-6801. Find him on Twitter at @ZachsORoutdoors.