‘Good Samaritan’ turns snorkeler’s severed arm over to Coast Guard rescue crew

By HOWARD COHEN | Miami Herald | Published: November 29, 2019

MIAMI (Tribune News Service) — A Thanksgiving ocean dive for a snorkeler turned tragic for one man when a boat ran over one of the divers and severed his arm.

The incident happened off the Palm Beach shoreline near Root Trail, WPTV reported.

Rescue teams from the U.S. Coast Guard’s Lake Worth station, Palm Beach Fire Rescue, Palm Beach Police and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission responded.

According to reports, a Good Samaritan turned the man’s arm over to the Coast Guard rescue team who then gave it to fire rescue paramedics on shore, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported.

The Coast Guard had set up security zones and planned routine patrols this month through February not far away from the Mar-a-Lago Resort after President Donald Trump declared his property his official residence, Space Coast News reported. One of the Coast Guard’s 45-foot rescue boats was called out to assist the snorkeler.

“You always need to be prepared for the worst case scenario when diving,” Coast Guard lieutenant commander Jason Neiman told the Sun Sentinel as he urged divers to take precautions that included diving with others and telling people of all dive plans.

A witness, Samantha Marulli, told WPTV she was on the beach when she saw numerous divers in the water and a boat approach.

“A boat came along and went right over them. When they pulled him out of the water, he didn’t have an arm. The fireman used a paddle board to go out with a bag to get the arm,” Marulli told the station.

The snorkeler was sent to the trauma unit of St. Mary’s Medical Center with life threatening injuries, WPBF ABC25 reported.

The incident is under investigation.

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