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Kayaker Lucky To Be Alive: Police


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Frank Okely was blown 20 kilometres off course... from Rottnest Island to Floreat Beach. (ABC)

Police say a 48-year-old man is lucky to be alive after being swept away from Rottnest Island in a kayak.

They say the man, from West Leederville, left the main jetty at Thomsons Bay at 1.00pm yesterday to paddle to Longreach Bay.

When he failed to return his wife raised the alarm sparking a search involving police, water police, marine rangers, boats and a helicopter.

Police say the man was located at Floreat Beach in Perth, by a member of the public, suffering from hypothermia and cramps.

He was taken to hospital by ambulance.

Police believe a combination of his large, heavy kayak and strong south-west winds combined with a large swell pushed him towards Perth.

They say he was lucky he was blown to the mainland and not out to sea.

Water Police say the incident is a timely reminder of the importance of informing family and authorities about journeys at sea.

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