A 50-year-old fisherman clinging to jagged rocks off Dog Island in the Caribbean was saved Sunday by the Coast Guard in a daring rescue during Tropical Storm Earl.

The rescued fisherman, who was not identified, took his 26-foot fishing boat out to the rocks off the coast of Dog Island to spearfish when the waves started to intensify, injuring and stranding him, Coast Guard News reported.

The fisherman clung to jagged rocks battling six-foot waves, waiting to be rescued as a nearby friend called 911 to get help.

The Coast Guard base in San Juan sprung into action around 8:30 am, contacting a rescue team at Air Station Borinquen in St. Thomas, Coast Guard News reported.

USCG helo rescue.
The Coast Guard had to use a aircraft rescue swimmer to save the fisherman.
USCGSoutheast / Twitter

A 33-foot Special Purpose boat and an MH-60T Jayhawk helicopter were deployed to rescue the stranded fisherman.

When the rescuers arrived, the boat crew attempted to pass a heavy line to the injured fisherman. But the brutal force of the waves prevented the rope from reaching him.

The rescue helicopter then deployed an aircraft rescue swimmer, who dropped down to harness the injured fisherman and lift him off the rocks to safety.

The aircrew landed at Cyril E. King airport in St. Thomas and the fisherman was taken to Schneider Regional Medical Center, Coast Guard News reported.

The severity of the injuries the fisherman are unknown.

Tropical Strom Earl has been impacting the Caribbean as it continued to rage off the coasts of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands on Monday morning, causing heavy rainfall and dangerous swells. 

The storm began pulling away from the Caribbean as of late Monday night.

“I’m proud of the crew. Everyone came together as a team to safely and efficiently execute the mission,” said Lt. Shea Smith, Coast Guard MH-60T Jayhawk aircraft commander. “Fortunately, the survivor was able to hang on until we could arrive, and we are all glad that he is safe.”



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