Deputies recall saving man seconds before fishing boat burst into flames

“I mean, it was pretty obvious, if we don't pull him out, there’s only one way how that ends,” Deputy Daniel Hill said


By Amanda Spence

PORT SALERNO, Fla. — Two deputies are speaking out after rescuing an unconscious man seconds before his fishing boat burst into flames over the weekend.

Deputies Buddy Sprott and Daniel Hill spotted the boat, named “Fish Story,” while they were training in the area, WPTV reported. According to Hill, the fire was becoming larger and “getting extremely hot.”

The officers raced into action, climbing onto the boat, but they found the hatch at the bow locked.

“I was able to break a window at the side of the boat and talk to the male,” Sprott told WPTV. “The only thing he was able to state was that ‘I need help.’”

The deputies managed to reach the man and pull him out just in time.

“The only thing going through my head at this point is, ‘We need to get this guy out. Just, somehow, make it happen,’” Hill explained.

Witness video showed the boat on fire and the flames were so intense that part of the Martin County Sheriff’s Office Marine vessel melted.

“I mean, it was pretty obvious, if we don't pull him out, there’s only one way how that ends,” Hill continued.

The boat owner remains hospitalized but is expected to be OK. An investigation into the cause of the fire remains ongoing.

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