OCEANSIDE — The search for a swimmer reported missing has been called off after days of combing the beaches and waters off of the 300 block of South Strand beach, finding no swimmer and receiving no concrete information that anyone had gone missing.
Police and firefighters were the first to respond to the 7:45 p.m. May 29 call from witnesses who reported seeing a swimmer in distress in the five-foot to six-foot surf. But an initial search by lifeguards didn’t locate the swimmer.
Within an hour of the distress call, San Diego County Sheriff’s Aerial Support to Regional Enforcement Agencies (ASTREA) and Coast Guard rescue helicopters began searching the water, as two police boats patrolled beyond the surf. Firefighters and lifeguards continued to check the beaches and surf line.
The search continued for more than three hours, covering the coast from the Oceanside Pier to the Encina power plant. Lifeguards returned the following morning to search the beach and water again.
Other than the original witnesses, there was no additional confirmation that anyone was actually missing. To help rule out the possibility of a missing person, police checked the parking lots and streets in the immediate area overnight in order to identify any vehicles that might have been left behind. No one had been reported missing to the Oceanside Police Department.
A swimmer did exit the water near the reported location, but witnesses could not confirm that it was the swimmer they saw in trouble.