Sandhaven RNLI lifeguards rescue two school children

Lifeguards News Release

During a school visit to Sandhaven (Mowbray) beach on Tuesday 13 July, two children and one trainee teacher got caught in a rip current.

Three RNLI lifeguards stand on a sandy beach. All are wearing yellow tops with RNLI on them and red shorts. Next to them are red and yellow flags.

RNLI/Derry Salter

RNLI Sandhaven lifeguards rescue two school children. Aaron Curle (middle) and Luke Dixon (right).

A visit from a group of school children to Sandhaven beach, a popular place for water sports, saw the RNLI Sandhaven lifeguard team on high alert. Half of the children attended a local Surf School on the beach, with the other half paddling in the water.

At around 1:30pm, the charity's lifeguard, Luke Dixon was monitoring the beach with his binoculars when he noticed two children swimming far out in between the black and white chequered flags – a zone solely for watercrafts such as kayaks or surfboards. As Luke began to enter the water, a trainee teacher swam further towards the children into the deeper water.

The RNLI Sandhaven team of three, with Luke joined by lifeguards Jesse Alexander and Finn Scherczer, quickly entered the water after noticing the two children and their teacher were stuck in a strong rip current. The team used the rescue boards to usher the casualties past the rip and parallel to the shoreline, before taking them back ashore.

Once the children were ashore, Senior lifeguard Aaron Curle assisted the team in escorting the group of three to the lifeguard base where they underwent a series of medical care checks. After concluding that the two children had taken in large amounts of water, the team of four phoned an ambulance.

Whilst waiting for the ambulance, the Sandhaven team gave the two children oxygen to ensure their condition remained stable. Within five minutes the ambulance arrived to assist. Although the children were shaken up, none sustained any serious injuries.

Senior lifeguard Aaron Curle praised the children’s calmness whilst stuck in the rip current:

‘The children were great. They ignored their natural instinct to swim towards the shore and instead stayed calm; it was essential that they did not wear themselves out.

'The children followed our Float to Live advice until our RNLI lifeguard team reached them.’

If you find yourself stuck in a rip current, stay calm and follow the RNLI’s Float to Live advice:

· Fight your instinct to thrash around

· Lean back and extend your arms and legs

· If needs be, move them around gently to float

· Float until you can control your breathing

· Calmly call for help

For more information please visit: Rip Currents - Water Safety Advice And Drowning Prevention (

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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 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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