The Santa Barbara County Fire Department sent a lot of equipment and a helicopter to Goleta Beach on Friday evening for a water rescue, but the man who called 9-1-1 ended up being in waist-deep water so firefighters were able to walk him back to shore.

A man was fishing in the surf near Campus Point and the tide came up on him, county firefighter Sky Bonillo said.

“He got a little bit panicked and called 9-1-1,” Bonillo said.

Multiple engines and the Air Support Unit helicopter responded to the scene around 6:15 p.m., although the helicopter was canceled just before it arrived. 

“Two firefighters walked out, kind of held his arm and brought him back to shore,” he said.

The man had no injuries and left the scene in his own vehicle.

“We always send a lot of equipment because you never know — but it was not much this time,” Bonillo said.

Noozhawk news editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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Giana Magnoli, Noozhawk Managing Editor

Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at