A DOG walker’s stroll on the beach turned into a horror ordeal when a sand dune crumbled underneath him leaving him trapped against Steetley Pier.
Kevin Horsley, 61, told how he found himself unable to move his trapped left leg while fearing the volatile sand dunes could crumble again at any point.
Fortunately the marrieddad-of-two had been out walking with his younger brother, Alan, 59, of the town’s Truro Drive, who alerted firefighters of Kevin’s tumble.
They managed to dig him out in just 20 minutes and Kevin somehow escaped the fall without injury.
But the retired hospital porter, of Warren Road, Hartlepool, said if it was a child in the same situation, they could have easily found themselves trapped above the chest and fighting for their lives.
He is now calling for the pier to be cordoned off to avoid a similar accident ending in a disaster. His plea is echoed by Stranton Fire Station crew manager Kevin Harrison, who described it as extremely dangerous.
Kevin’s frightening fall happened at around 10am yesterday.
He was walking along the beach with Alan who pointed out that he had never been on the pier.
The pair decided to make their way up to the pier but as Kevin stepped up the sand dune next to it, the sand beneath his feet suddenly crumbled with small boulders which trapped Kevin’s leg.
Kevin, who suffers with diabetes and angina, said: “It was frightening. My main concern was that the sand was going to keep disappearing underneath me and I was going to end up trapped up to my chest.
“I was apprehensive, all sorts of thoughts were running through my mind at the time and I started to panic quite a lot.
“I’m a large man, I weigh 19 stone, but if it was a child it could have been completely different and it could have ended in tragedy.”
Kevin, who is married to wife, Roalind, says he now realises how dangerous the pier is, describing it as a “hazard” and says the issue needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
Crew manager Mr Harrison said: “He was lucky to avoid any sort of injury, especially a broken ankle. The pier is extremely dangerous and we urge everyone to stay away.”
Paramedics attended and checked Kevin over once he was released from the sand, and Coastguard staff were also alerted.