Boys saved from drowning off Camber coast

Lifeboats News Release

The weather in Camber, on Friday morning 26 June, could not have been more different from the day before. A sea mist hung over the beach and the air was damp, a far cry from the baking temperatures of Thursday 25 when the beaches were packed.

Photo of RNLI lifeguard James Blything.


RNLI lifeguard James Blything.

RNLI lifeguards Oliver and James were keeping watch over Camber Central beach when Oliver noticed two boys who were 150-200metres from the shore shouting and waving in distress.

Oliver commented later, ‘Having given my radio and hat to a beachgoer on the shore I entered the water and made towards the casualties. One of them yelled for me to help his brother who couldn’t swim. I encouraged him to try and float but he was too distressed so I towed him into shore using a chin support.”

Whilst this was taking place James another lifeguard arrived with his board and headed out to the second casualty who was keeping his head just above the water. He was placed on the board and brought to the safety of the shore. Both lifeguards acted swiftly and their world-class training enabled them to prevent what could have been a tragedy.

Once both boys were safely ashore they were asked questions to make sure they hadn’t swallowed water as this can lead to secondary-drowning and then advised to go to hospital to get checked out.

Lifeguard supervisor Georgia Landy praised the lifeguards for their quick thinking and their calmness throughout the rescue. One further minute can mean a fatality at the beach.

The RNLI urges people to read as much safety advice as possible before they arrive at the beach. It is important to swim between the yellow and red flags and to make yourself aware of the local conditions and tide timetables.

The lifeguards who patrol the beaches are trained to deal with a variety of senarios and part of their work is preventative by educating the beachgoers about the dangers of the water and keeping safe. Always Respect the Water and keep safe.

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 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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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.