Dad swept out to sea in South Shields rescued by surfer and lifeguards
A surfer came to the aid of a dad who was swept out to sea in South Shields before lifeguards came to his rescue.
A man in his 30s was playing with his daughter at Sandhaven beach in South Shields on Saturday, August 28 when he got caught by the current and was dragged out to sea.
The dad had been in the water on the sandbanks between the red and yellow flags at around 4.30pm when he became stuck by a flash rip and ended up more than 150m from the shore.
Luckily, a nearby surfer spotted the man struggling and pulled him onto the surfboard to keep him afloat.
Meanwhile one of the on-duty RNLI lifeguards in a 4x4, who had been keeping an eye on the man before the incident, immediately requested for the inshore rescue boat (IRB).
Finn Scherczer and Alex Gwynn reached the man in the lifeboat where they found him to be very weak and exhausted.
The team thanked the surfer and took the man back to shore where he underwent a series of medical checks.
After discovering the man suffered from asthma, an ambulance was called.
Thankfully, the man appeared to be in a stable condition and did not sustain any serious injuries.
Lead Lifeguard Supervisor Sean Mills thanked the unknown surfer for his assistance and warned the public about the dangers of rip currents.
He said: “It is great that the man and his daughter decided to visit a lifeguarded beach as it meant our lifeguards instantly spotted him as soon as he found himself in trouble.
“Flash rips are unpredictable and dangerous; fighting the current will only exhaust you.
"Stay calm and wait for assistance.”
If you find yourself stuck in a rip current, follow the RNLI’s ‘Float to Live’ advice:
:: Fight your instinct to thrash around
:: Lean back, extend your arms and legs
:: If you need to gently move them around to help you float
:: Float until you can control your breathing
:: Only then call for help or swim to safety
For more information visit: https://rnli.org/safety/know-the-risks/rip-currents