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Member of public and RNLI lifeguards rescue unconscious boy at Langland

Lifeguards News Release

A member of the public and RNLI lifeguards worked together to rescue a boy who fell unconscious after hitting his head in the sea at Langland Bay.

A stock photo of an RNLI lifeguard in action

RNLI

A stock photo of an RNLI lifeguard in action

The 14-year-old boy was swimming in the red and yellow flagged swimming area at the Gower beach when he hit his head and fell unconscious in the water.

A woman also swimming in the sea was the first to see the situation and was able to grab the boy and pull him towards the shore as RNLI lifeguards Max Addy and Conor Hepp immediately responded.

The woman passed the unconscious boy into the care of the lifeguards in the shallow water and luckily he regained consciousness as Max and Conor brought him up the beach.

The boy was showing signs of concussion and treating him as a casualty with a suspected spinal injury, the lifeguard team conducted full condition checks, before immobilising him and strapping him into a stretcher.

Lifeguards and members of the public then carried him up the beach and lifeguards continued to monitor his condition alongside The Mumbles Coastguard Rescue Team members until paramedics arrived. He was then taken to hospital in an ambulance.

Rob Steele, RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, said: ‘We would like to thank the quick thinking member of the public who initially spotted this boy in difficulty and brought him back towards the beach.

‘Our lifeguards’ training kicked in and their procedures for handling casualties with suspected head or spinal injuries were carried out well. The fact that this boy was swimming in the red and yellow flagged area meant lifeguards were on hand and were able to respond immediately.

‘We are glad to hear the boy is now out of hospital and we wish him all the best for the future.’

The RNLI’s seasonal lifeguard service in the Swansea area will end on Sunday (3 September). From 6pm on Sunday there will be no lifeguards on Aberavon beach, Swansea Bay, Langland Bay, Caswell Bay, Three Cliffs Bay and Port Eynon beach and Pembrey.

Lifeguard Supervisor Tom John said: ‘I would like to thank all the lifeguards who once again provided a first class safety service on the beaches this summer. They have shown commitment and dedication to both their ongoing training and their work on the beaches.

‘After Sunday there will be no red and yellow flags flying on the beaches in the area, which means there’s no lifeguard service operating.

‘People visiting the beaches after this can help keep themselves safe by taking note of the safety signage at the entrance to the beach, going with a friend or telling someone on the shore where they are going, and always being aware of the conditions and their own capabilities in the water. Autumn sees big spring tides and bigger swell around the coast. People walking on the coast should always check the tide times before setting out and carry a means of communication.

‘The bigger swells mean more unpredictable rip currents in the water, which are strong currents of water running out to sea that can quickly drag you out beyond your depth. If you get caught in a rip, don’t panic, and don’t try to swim against it or you’ll get exhausted. If you can stand, wade, don’t swim. If you’re out of your depth and getting tired, try to relax and float for a short time to regain control of your breathing. Then, if you can, swim parallel to the shore until free of the rip and then head for shore, raise your hand and shout for help.

‘The RNLI’s advice is not to enter the water if you see someone in trouble but rather to call 999 and ask for the coastguard.’

Notes to editors:

The attached pictures is a stock image of an RNLI lifeguard in action. Credit RNLI.

For more information please contact Chris Cousens, RNLI Press Officer, Wales and West, on 07748 265 496 or 01745 585162 or by email on Chris_Cousens@RNLI.org.uk.

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland