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RNLI lifeguards treat boy with suspected broken leg at Whitesands beach

Lifeguards News Release

RNLI lifeguards’ teamwork has been praised after they treated a boy who suffered a suspected broken leg playing rugby on Whitesands beach.

Stock RNLI lifeguard photo


Stock RNLI lifeguard photo

Six of the charity’s lifeguard team – both on duty and off duty lifeguards - worked as a team to move the 10-year-old boy, who sustained the injury close to the water’s edge on an incoming tide, to safety.

Senior lifeguard Luke Thompson was alerted to the injured boy, thought to be 10 years old, at the southern end of Whitesands beach at about 1pm on Tuesday (18 July).

Senior lifeguard Jonathan Gates and lifeguard Morgan Williams went to him with first aid equipment and pain relief. The boy had sustained an injury to his thigh. Jonathan and Morgan carried out an initial assessment and decided to treat the injury as a suspected fracture.

Lifeguard Finn Iles and off duty lifeguard Zak Morgan provided support with a spine board stretcher and they transported the boy to the surf lifesaving club clubhouse’s first aid room before the tide came in over where the injury occurred.

Supervisor Sam Trevor and Senior Lifeguard Luke maintained watch of the red and yellow flagged swimming area and liaised with the emergency services, while St Davids Coastguard Rescue Team and paramedics arrived shortly after.

The Wales Air Ambulance helicopter was requested and St Davids Coastguard team prepared a landing site and provided support for the boy’s family. After approximately two hours of treatment the child was airlifted and taken to Moriston Hospital in Swansea.

RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor Sam Trevor said: ‘Having witnessed the whole incident myself I would like to praise the professionalism and skill the lifeguards showed when treating what appeared to be a very serious injury.

‘As well as being able to respond to water emergencies, our lifeguards carry a range of first aid equipment and are fully first aid trained. We would always encourage people to come to the lifeguard units on our beaches and ask for help if they see anyone in need of first aid assistance on or near the beach.’

RNLI lifeguards are providing a daily safety service on Whitesands Beach and 11 other Pembrokeshire beaches throughout the summer school holidays.

Notes to editors:

The attached picture is a stock RNLI lifeguard photo. Credit RNLI.

Media contacts:

For more information please contact Chris Cousens, RNLI Press Officer, Wales and West, on 07748 265 496 or 01745 585162 or by email on

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland