Redhead Lifesavers Awarded Rescue of the Month

Lifesavers from Redhead SLSC in the Hunter region have been awarded the National Surf Life Saving Rescue of the Month as well as the Surf Life Saving NSW Rescue of the month for November 2014 after their difficult rescue of two ski paddlers.

On Sunday 2 November at 8:40am, lifesavers at Redhead SLSC rescued four ocean ski paddlers from nearby rocks in hazardous 2-3 metre surf conditions.

The four ocean ski paddlers had set out from Swansea and planned to come in at Redhead, however, by the time they reached Redhead beach, the surf conditions had become dangerous. The two less-experienced paddlers were in front while the other two struggled to catch up to warn them of the dangerous conditions.

Prior to the patrol commencing, Tim Foran noticed the four paddlers in trouble and heading towards the rocks. Tim immediately ran for a rescue board and paddled out to assist the two less experienced ski paddlers who by this stage had lost their skis. They were clinging to rocks waiting for help while the other two ski paddlers made it safely to shore.

Drew Morgan used the signal flags to direct Tim to the first paddler, who he was able to successfully rescue, while Mark Ayre grabbed a rescue board and paddled out to the remaining stranded ski paddler. Unfortunately Mark was knocked off his board and immediately Chris Bird and Jeff Rodway launched an IRB to assist Mark and the last ski paddler. While attempting to rescue the two men, the IRB was hit by a wave and capsized, leaving four people in trouble.

Tim paddled out a second time and successfully rescued the ski paddler while a second IRB was launched by Gavin Eckert and Iain Robertson to retrieve Mark, Chris and Jeff. The other lifesavers involved provided valuable assistance and support and the rescue effort highlighted the team’s ability to work together to achieve a successful outcome in extremely challenging conditions.

The SLSNSW Rescue of the Month aims to recognise excellence in lifesaving. Each month a ‘Rescue of the Month’ is awarded at State level for the most outstanding rescue performance for that period. Monthly winners have the chance to win the Australian Rescue of the Month and become finalists for the SLSNSW Rescue of the Year which is presented at the annual Awards of Excellence.

For official citations and past recipients please visit the Rescue of the Month Recognition Page.

Fri 19 Dec 2014