Strong winds and rain force several rescues

August 11, 2012

Winds rose in parts of the Washington area Saturday evening, capsizing a boat off the Southern Maryland shore and throwing seven people into the water.

All seven, who were clinging to the boat off Charles County, were rescued about 6 p.m. by the Cobb Island volunteer fire department, said the department’s chief, Bill Goldsmith. Winds “had picked up” as a storm moved in, he said.

It was one of four incidents of trouble in the water reported Saturday evening, and one of at least two apparently connected to the weather.

In the other weather-related incident, boats were sent to the aid of a sailboat in the Chesapeake Bay off Calvert County after a distress call was received. Waves were estimated at three to five feet.

“We’ve had some pretty hard rain blow through,” an official in the sheriff’s office said. But, the official added, “everything’s okay.”

Elsewhere, four adults and a child were rescued from an island in the Potomac River off upper Montgomery County, a fire department spokesman said. They had apparently taken shelter on Tenfoot Island after encountering difficulty in returning to where they had entered the river in inflatable watercraft, said Assistant Chief Scott Graham.

In the fourth incident, a motorist was rescued after a car went into a creek off Quarter Branch Road in the Lovettsville area of Loudoun County.

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