ILWACO, Wash. – One person died and five people were rescued by fishermen after a 25-foot guide boat capsized in the mouth of the Columbia River on Friday, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
The accident happened about 9:20 a.m. in 8-to-10-foot waves in the treacherous waters where the river and ocean currents collide.
The fishermen in a 27-foot guide fishing boat, the Teresa D, saw the boat capsize and pulled five people out of the water, according to Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class David Mosley. A sixth person was unaccounted for.
The Coast Guard arrived in the area and found the person trapped in debris from the capsized boat. The person was unresponsive and pronounced dead, Mosley said.
The five people who were rescued did not need medical attention, he said.
Two boats responded from Station Cape Disappointment along with a cutter and copter from Astoria, Oregon.
The owner of the Teresa D, Lonn Sweeney a retired Portland police sergeant, helped rescue the survivors.
"As we were coming in he kind of disappeared. We came up over (a) wave -- we saw him capsize, and there were five guys floating in the water. One guy (was) actually clinging to the boat," he told KATU.
At the time boats were returning to port after the Coast Guard sent out an alert about deteriorating conditions. When the boats went out it was fairly calm.
All the people on the fishing boat that capsized were wearing life jackets.
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