CHICAGO (CBS) — Firefighters rescued a man from Lake Michigan during severe weather Friday night, Chicago Fire officials confirmed.
The 20-year-old man was going under in the lake near Pratt.
Due to weather conditions, the Chicago Fire Department’s helicopter could not fly. The fire department boat was not close yet either.
The man was about 400 feet out, so four firefighters went in themselves, tethering flotation devices together to keep them and the man afloat.
“The waves were high. The water temperature, I believe, was 58 degrees,” said Battalion Chief Frank Cambria. “We were worried about hypothermia setting in. The victim was just about under water when Capt. Finnegan got to him.”
“He was in trouble. He was yelling,” said Capt. Michael Finnegan. “He was drowning. We went in.”
Two of the four firefighters were taken onto the fire department boat, and the other two got out of Lake Michigan by themselves.
The 20-year-old man was taken to Weiss Memorial Hospital to be treated for possible hypothermia.
And for one of the firefighters involved in the rescue, it was his very first day on the job.