Woman rescued in near-drowning after trying to save her dog

A woman was saved from drowning in the nick of time Thursday, after she swam out to rescue her dog during extreme surf conditions at Cowell Ranch Beach in San Mateo County.

The 40-year-old woman from La Honda was at the beach Thursday morning with her parents and her dog, when the dog went out into the ocean. Attempting to help her furry friend, the woman swam out after the dog. But while the dog made it back to shore, the woman was carried out about 200 feet, said Detective Rosemerry Blankswade, public information officer for the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office received a 911 call just after 11:30 a.m. and responded to the beach along with the county’s Harbor Patrol. Rescue swimmers with the Harbor Patrol reached the woman just as she was losing consciousness, Blankswade said. By that point, she had been in the frigid water about 20 minutes.

The woman was taken to a local hospital to be observed for signs of hypothermia, Blankswade said. She did not appear to have any other major injuries.

The rescue took place in the midst of a high surf advisory warning of waves of up to 25 feet from the North Bay down to Big Sur. The advisory, issued by the National Weather Service, is in effect until 9 p.m. Thursday.

About 15 miles down the coast from where the woman was rescued, a car drove off a cliff Monday along Highway 1 near Gray Whale Cove State Beach, as captured in this video. Dangerous surf conditions forced rescuers to suspend their search shortly after the crash, and the car still has not been found.

In Santa Cruz County, a man was rescued after wave swept him off a rock ledge at Bonny Doon Beach recently. County officials posted a video of the incident to its Facebook page Tuesday, using it as a warning to other beachgoers.

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