RNLI lifeguards save family of three on Bank Holiday weekend

Lifeguards News Release

Off-duty RNLI lifeguards rescued a family of three from strong rip currents and big surf at Tregonhawke beach on Sunday evening (28 August).

Senior RNLI lifeguard Dan Holley and volunteer RNLI lifeguard Tegan Louis-Puttick were holding surf lessons at the beach when they spotted a young bodyboarder in difficulty in two metre high surf.

Dan immediately went to the boy’s assistance and instructed Tegan to bring a soft surfboard with her to act as a rescue board, which is the equipment RNLI lifeguards use during patrol hours. Dan rescued the boy from the strong rip but whilst doing so, his father and sister tried to rescue him as well and ended up getting into trouble themselves.

Tegan arrived with the surfboard to help the remaining two casualties from the rough conditions with the help of a member of the public with a surfboard.

The Coastguard was initially called but later stood down.

Once the three casualties were safely back to shore, the lifeguards monitored them for signs of shock and they were given fresh water and blankets. They were also provided with safety advice on secondary drowning before they left the beach.

RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, Ant Thorpe, said: ‘The lifeguards involved responded really quickly and professionally to an out-of-hours incident. We patrol Tregonhawke from 10am-6pm and always have flagged areas for the safest swimming and surfing zones.

‘Conditions can change at the coast very quickly and the sea can be dangerously unpredictable. We urge people to swim at a lifeguarded beach during patrol hours so that we can help to keep you safe. If you spot someone in difficulty in the water call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.’

The RNLI’s Respect the Water campaign is running throughout the summer. To find out more about the dangers of the coast and how to stay safe, visit www.rnli.org/respectthewater or search #RespectTheWater on social media.

Notes to editors

Picture attached of the three family members and RNLI lifeguard Dan Holley

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The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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