HOUSTON A 51-year-old man is safe after falling off his sailboat and swimming three miles to shore near Freeport Saturday night.

The Brazoria County Sheriff s Department called the U.S. Coast Guard at 7 p.m. to report that a 12- to 14-foot Hobie Cat sailboat had washed up on Surfside Beach with no one aboard.

The USCG sent out a helicopter and a small response boat to search the area for the missing boater.

About an hour later, deputies spotted a man, with a life jacket, on the beach near the location where the sailboat was found.

The man said that he had fallen off his sailboat and swam all the way to shore.

This goes to show that a life jacket can and will save your life, said Petty Officer 1st Class Raymond Clemons, an operation specialist at USCG Sector Houston-Galveston.

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