RNLI Lifeguards Rescue Body Boarder

Lifeguards News Release

RNLI Lifeguards rescue a body boarder in difficulty at Whitesands Beach yesterday (29th July).

RNLI/Sean Ellison

There was a fair bit of swell yesterday which brought people flocking to the beach as we’ve had a prolonged spell of fine and dry conditions. Conditions were 2-3ft of surf. Senior Lifeguard was keeping watch from the Lifeguard base and spotted a person to the south of the bathing area who was out behind the breaking waves. She was visibly panicked and was pushing her body board away and trying to swim back to shore.

Dylan Macalast was patrolling the red and yellow flags at the time, and Senior LG Luke tasked him to enter the water immediately to perform a rescue. The other Lifeguards Mylo Houston-Sime and Callum Macalast took over patrol of the red and yellow flags and were ready to provide assistance.

As Dylan was approaching he could see that she was swimming ineffectively, very panicked and ‘climbing the ladder’. Dylan got her onto the rescue board and paddled in through the surf to bring her back to shore. She was very cold and only responding to voice. The Lifeguards took her to the club house and treated her as a cold patient, and warmed her up using a blanket in the first aid room. The Lifeguards monitored her for a time and her condition improved and became alert. The lifeguards released the woman to the care of her friend.

Sam Trevor RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor said 'Although this was a straightforward rescue, if it was not for the quick actions of the Lifeguards on duty yesterday it is likely that this person would have drowned. She showed all the signs of a person who was in the drowning process, discarding her means of keeping afloat and making an ineffective attempt to swim and keep above water. The Lifeguards showed a high level of teamwork, courage in challenging conditions, and care of a casualty. This shows how important it is to listen to the advice of Lifeguards and to swim and body board between the red and yellow flags where the Lifeguards can keep a close eye on everyone'.

RNLI/Sean Ellison

Lifeguard Team

Key facts about the RNLI

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, in a normal year, 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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.