Teenage girls clung to Felixstowe Pier after getting into difficulty swimming in sea

Felixstowe Pier in 2015

Felixstowe Pier in 2015 - Credit: Su Anderson

Two children were taken to hospital after being rescued from the sea off Felixstowe today.

The pair – who are believed to be around 14 years old – were heard calling for help as they clung on to the supports under the town’s pier.

They had been struggling to get back to shore after becoming tired when they swam out around 150 metres from the beach, further than they realised.

The incident came after two sea tragedies in Essex and Norfolk over the weekend, and another rescue on Sunday from the water off Camber Sands in Sussex.

It has prompted the coastguards to issue a further safety warning to youngsters in particular, about the dangers of sea-borne activities.

Police, paramedics and the coastguard were alerted to the teenagers shouting for assistance shortly before 2pm.

Suffolk Constabulary said officers had received a report from a member of the public regarding two people stuck in the water at the end of Felixstowe pier, calling out for help.

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After the coastguard was called the inshore lifeboat from Harwich was launched.

Police spokeswoman Anne-Marie Breach said the girls were stranded in the sea and were holding on to the pier supports.

She said the teenagers were hauled out of the water shortly before 2.25pm. They had been in the water for around 30 to 40 minutes.

One of the girls – who are both thought to be from Felixstowe – injured an ankle. Both were suffering from the effects of the cold water.

Holly Cowan, a spokeswoman for The East of England Ambulance Service Trust, said an ambulance and a rapid response vehicle attended the scene and treated both patients for exposure.

They were both taken to Ipswich Hospital.

Samantha Sinclair, a spokeswoman for HM Coastguard said: “At about 1.55pm a member of the public called to the UK Coastguard to report two children in difficulties off Felixstowe Pier,

“One of the children was reported to have an ankle injury, and they were both calling for help at the end of the pier about 150 metres out at sea.

“A member of the public threw a life ring to the children.

“The Harwich RNLI inshore lifeboat was sent to the scene, along with the East England Ambulance Service and the Suffolk police.

“Both children were safely recovered by Harwich lifeboat and handed over to the ambulance service. The Felixstowe Coastguard Rescue Team were also on scene.

“The UK Coastguard would always recommend that children are accompanied by adults when they go to the beach and that they swim or bodyboard on a lifeguarded beach between the red and yellow flags if they can.

“Everyone should stay within their depth and swim parallel to the shore.”

On Sunday a body was found after a man in his 20s capsized from a kayak off Jaywick beach, near Clacton.

On Saturday a 54-year-old man died at Sea Palling in Norfolk after he got caught in a riptide.

His 26-year-old male swimming companion had to be resuscitated after going into cardiac arrest. He was airlifted to hospital.

The pair were among four people who had got into difficulties in the sea.