Man on raft drowns off St. Pete Beach

ST. PETE BEACH — Authorities say a man found floating in the water off St. Pete Beach has died.

Rescue crews pulled the man from the water after beachgoers called 911 around 5 p.m. Thursday. Witnesses told the Tampa Bay Times they lost sight of the man as he went out to sea on a raft.

A firefighter paddled out to the area and found the man face down in the Gulf of Mexico.

Officials say the man was brought back to the beach where rescuers tried to revive him. He died a short time later at a hospital.

The man's name has not been released. No other details were immediately available.

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