Cannon Beach - Strong currents pulled a local surfer out to sea near Cannon Beach Tuesday morning.

Around 10:30 a.m., the U.S. Coast Guard received a call from Seaside's 9-1-1 dispatch, relaying a report that a surfer was in distress in the Pacific Ocean at Ecola State Park, said Darin McCracken, a petty officer with the U.S. Coast Guard.

The Coast Guard diverted a patrolling HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter to rescue the surfer, Matt Heyward, 37, of Cannon Beach, who was safely hoisted by basket into the aircraft. He was transferred to the main parking lot of Ecola State Park, where a landing zone had been secured by Cannon Beach police and fire personnel. Fire Department crews gave him a medical evaluation.

Eight firefighters responded, as did Cannon Beach Police Department, Medix Ambulance and Oregon State Parks staff.

Currents off the Oregon and Washington coasts are unpredictable, strong and dangerous, according to the Coast Guard. The agency advises surfers and other water-sports participants to check local weather, tides and surf conditions before heading out into the water.

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