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11-year-old girl rescued at Southwold after being caught up in lateral current

PUBLISHED: 12:20 14 August 2018 | UPDATED: 12:47 14 August 2018

Harrison Blowers, of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, rescues girl who got caught up in a lateral current at Southwold. Picture: RNLI

Harrison Blowers, of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, rescues girl who got caught up in a lateral current at Southwold. Picture: RNLI

Archant

A lifeguard at Southwold had to rescue an 11-year-old girl after she got caught up in a lateral current and was being dragged towards the pier.

Harrison Blowers, of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, swam out on a rescue board and brought her back to shore.

At around 1pm, on Sunday, the girl was swimming out between the red and yellow flags when the current suddenly became too strong for her to swim against and began pushing her towards the pier.

The child had got caught in a lateral current, a current which runs parallel to the shore.

Liam Fayle-Parr, RNLI Lifeguard supervisor, said: “This was a fantastic outcome. We were so pleased the girl managed to stay calm and keep herself afloat until our lifeguard could reach her on a rescue board.

“Her reaction showed that our Respect the Water campaign message to stay calm and float does work. The sea is incredibly unpredictable and currents can quickly change direction - knowing how to behave if this happens to you in the water, can save your life.

“The incident also highlights the importance of swimming between the red and yellow flags, which are there to let swimmers know where is safest to swim, and meant our lifeguards could get to her immediately.”

After the rescue, the young girl told the lifeguards: “The current suddenly became too strong for me to swim against, thank you for your help.”

The family also treated the lifeguards on shift to fish and chips afterwards.

The rescue happened shortly after RNLI Southwold Lifeboat Day demonstrations, in which the lifeguards also relayed important beach safety messages.

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