Warning after Hartlepool lifeguards rescue three children from the sea at Seaton Carew
Lifeguards are warning beach users not to swim outside safe zones after rescuing three young people who got into trouble in the sea.
Seaton Carew beach lifeguards Simon Almond and Mohamed Hai have been called into action twice already this summer.
In once case, Simon says a 12-year-old girl would not have made it back to the shore if he had not spotted her.
He took to his rescue board to help the girl and her 15-year-old friend.
Simon, 30, said: “We had been reminding people all day to swim within the area marked by the flags and I spotted two people who were about 100 metres outside of that area and were also a bit further out from the other swimmers.
“The 12-year-old was in quite a bit of distress and I got her onto the rescue board and paddled her back to shore, returning immediately for her companion.
“They had been trying to swim back against an offshore wind but were making no progress.
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“If I hadn’t seen them, I certainly don’t think the 12-year-old would have made it back.”
In the second rescue, lifeguard Mohamed, who has been a Seaton Carew lifeguard for the last three years, went to help a teenage boy who was inside the swimming area but was starting to get out of his depth.
Mohamed, 21, said: “One of his friends ran over to say that he couldn’t swim – his head was out of the water but there was an offshore wind and you have to be very careful as that can take you further out without you noticing.
“He held onto my rescue board and I got him back to the shore.”
Debbie Kershaw, Hartlepool Borough Council’s Quality and Safety Officer who oversees the lifeguards, said: “We want people to enjoy their day on the beach, but they need to take care at all times when in the water.
“We would strongly urge them to read the safety advice signs when they arrive at the beach, take advice from the lifeguards and above all – only swim in the area marked by the red and yellow flags, which is where the lifeguards patrol.”