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3 water rescues reported near South Haven on Lake Michigan

Lake conditions are expected to be dangerous on Sunday and Labor Day.
Credit: NWS Grand Rapids/Twitter
The National Weather Service shared this photo of 4-foot waves washing over South Haven piers on Saturday, Sept. 5.

SOUTH HAVEN, Mich. — South Haven Area Emergency Services reported three separate water rescues that occurred on Lake Michigan Saturday afternoon.

Around 2:35 p.m., two incidents happened in succession. In one, a woman was found floating unconscious in the water and she was brought to the shore by good Samaritans who administered CPR. The South Haven Police Department said she was not breathing but quickly regained consciousness. She was brought to the hospital and later released.

Around the same time, a man was caught in rip currents near the south pier in South Haven. He was assisted by a boater and was taken to the city's southside marina. Video of this rescue was shared by the Great Lakes Surf and Rescue Project, a group that tracks drownings and advocates for life guards on Michigan beaches. 

Around 4:30 p.m. a Van Buren County Sheriff Marine patrol saw a man "floundering" in the water about a mile off the north beach, SHAES reported. He had been thrown from a dingy into 3-5 feet waves; the boat had washed ashore unoccupied. Deputies rescued the man and he was brought to the southside marina where he was treated by SHAES responders then taken to the hospital. 

"The city of South Haven wants to remind everyone not to underestimate the power of Lake Michigan. Dangerous currents occur when there are winds and waves," a news release from the police department said. 

The National Weather Service said Saturday that waves exceeded 4-feet in South Haven, and they were washing over the piers. "Large waves, strong currents will make swimming dangerous into evening. Dangerous conditions expected Sunday afternoon through much of Labor Day," they said. 

The Great Lakes Surf and Rescue Project says there have been 76 drownings on the Great Lakes this year, 40 of those in Lake Michigan.

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