Sheriff: Boat sinks, couple climbs trees to escape alligators

PIERRE PART, LA (WAFB) - The Assumption Parish's Sheriff's Office says a Baton Rouge couple is safe after an evening they may never forget.

The Sheriff's office received a call around 9 p.m. Sunday night from a relative of the man and woman, saying they launched their boat at the Bayou Corne Boat Launch around noon Sunday, but they had not been seen since. The boat launch is about 36 miles south of Baton Rouge, just north of Pierre Part, LA.

The Water Search and Rescue Unit was dispatched, along with three other boats, to search for the couple.

Around 10:20 p.m., the man's brother contacted the Sheriff's Office stating that they received a text message saying "they were broken down across the lake." This text had been sent that afternoon but was just noticed by the relative.

Just after midnight, Deputies found the couple about 15-feet high in a cypress tree, about a half mile south of the Cracker Head Canal in a cypress swamp, which outlines Lake Verrett. The couple said they had a mechanical failure around 5 p.m. and waves eventually swamped the boat and it sank in Lake Verrett.

According to the couple, after the boat started to sink, they swam towards the trees off Lake Verrett and waited for help or a passing boater. Before dark they noticed alligators in the area moving in their direction so they climbed cypress trees.

Deputies also said when they were rescuing the couple; they saw several active alligators in the area.

The rescued Baton Rouge Couple was brought to Joe Gaudet's Boat Landing in Pierre Part where they were examined by the Pierre Part Fire and Rescue and Acadian Ambulance.

They were later taken back to their vehicle parked at the launch. The Boat was also recovered by the Sheriff's Office and brought back to the landing.

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