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Woman Saved From Drowning

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7:01am 12th August 2013

A woman has been grabbed by the hand as she sank below the waves at Bude.

The holidaymaker who couldn't swim had been swept off a sand bank at Summerleaze.

The woman, who is on holiday in the area, was swept into deep water surrounding a sand bank. The incident happened during a busy period when the lifeguard team were working flat out to patrol 400 people in the water.

RNLI Senior Lifeguard Rory Sacree was patrolling on the rescue jet ski when he saw the woman being swept off the sand bank and into ten foot deep water.

She couldn't find the strength to clamber onto the rescue sled. With help from Rory she managed to get half on before slipping back in to the water and disappearing below the surface.

But Rory managed to catch her hand, holding it tight until he could reach calm water and turn the power off so he could help her on to the sled safely.

On reaching the beach, the RNLI lifeguard team treated the woman until she was taken by her family to the Bude and Stratton Hospital to be checked for any signs of secondary drowning.   

Mini Fry, RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, said the whole RNLI team dealt very professionally with a difficult and demanding period where the conditions were tricky, hundreds were in the water and a further 2,500 people were on the beach: "This lady was extremely lucky that Rory was right there when she was swept into the deep water troughs that lie to the side of the sand bank, especially as she couldn't swim.

"If you are going to visit a beach as a non-swimmer it's really worth talking to the lifeguards about suitable areas to paddle and enjoy the water safely. They'll be delighted to help you."

Phil Hill, RNLI Lifeguard Manager, said: "I'd like to pay tribute to the whole team on duty at Summerleaze including Rory, Spike Murray, Dan Gow and Barnaby Simpson who were kept extremely busy monitoring a small bathing area packed with people. They did a tremendous job."

7:01am 12th August 2013

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