Fisherman rescued after falling 3m into Fremantle Harbour
Leeuwin crew member Angela Lewis with the injured fisherman. Picture: Erika Delemarre/Leeuwin Ocean Adventure

A crew member from the training ship Leeuwin jumped into Fremantle Harbour to rescue a fishermen who fell three metres into the water this morning.

The man, believed to be aged in his 40s, was struggling to keep his head above water and was in danger of being swept under the wharf.

Angela Lewis, a bosun on the STS Leeuwin II, was one of three people from the Leeuwin Ocean Adventure who raced to the fisherman's aid.

SEE MORE ON THE DRAMATIC RESCUE ON 7 NEWS AT 6PM

Ms Lewis jumped in when she realised the man was struggling to keep his head above water.

“At first I was on the wharf chatting to him and he was okay because he was floating with the life ring,” she said.

“But then he started putting his face down in the water and wasn’t lifting his head back up.

“I jumped in and grabbed him and got his head out of the water and one of these guys lowered a second life ring down for me.

“We held onto him and kept him out of the water.”

Her crew mate, Mark Wright, climbed down a ladder at the wharf and kept hold of the pair to stop them from drifting away or being swept under the wharf.

They stayed with him for about 30 minutes until a Fremantle Ports pilot boat arrived and the pair were plucked from the water.

The pilot boat was called when it became apparent the fisherman was too weak to climb stairs to safety.

Picture: 7 News

Workers from the ocean adventure ran about 50m down the wharf to help after the alarm was raised.

They arrived to find the man clinging to a plastic bucket attached to a line that had been thrown to him by another fisherman.

Lifebuoys were thrown to the man, but he still struggled to remain above the water.

Ms Lewis initially clambered down to another beam above the water to help but jumped in when the man was in danger of being pushed under the wharf by the current.

Erika Delemarre, the Leeuwin Ocean Adventure Foundation marketing and fundraising officer, had raised the alarm after a colleague saw the man fall into the water.

“It’s fortunate she saw him go over,” Ms Delemarre said.

“When we got there, an older couple who had been fishing nearby had dropped a bucket and line to him and he was holding onto the bucket, while the older fisherman was holding the line.

“But I don’t know what would have happened if there had not been anyone else around.

“Our full-time crew train for emergencies like these.

“This man was really lucky because he was spotted by an able crew who could jump into action quickly.

“Everything that our program is about is what took place today, with our team really coming together, filling the roles needed and making everything happen as efficiently as we possibly could.”

The crew constantly go through safety training drills so it was easy for them to work together to help.

The man was taken to Fremantle Hospital and is in a stable condition.

The West Australian

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