Broulee Lifesavers Win Rescue of the Month

Broulee Surfers Lifesavers Billy Hughes-Tweedie and Ben McKay have received the SLSNSW Rescue of the Month for saving two people from dangerous surf.

On 11 November 2012, Broulee Lifesavers Billy Hughes-Tweedie and Ben McKay were board training at Broulee beach after the end of their patrol.

Nearby, a 12 year old boy on a body board and his father had walked directly into a rip current adjacent to the rocks and were being swept out to sea.

Ben McKay noticed immediately the danger of the situation and paddled over to the young boy and pulled him onto his board.

Billy Hughes-Tweedie also responded, securing the father onto his board.

Both lifesavers then negotiated the large waves and rough conditions, bringing the patients safely back to shore.

Trainer Darren Phillips described the conditions on the day as, “a washing machine” and said the event would have ended in tragedy had the pair not intervened.

“There were huge rips running everywhere, waves over four metres and given the age and fitness of the man he was in a lot of difficulty, really struggling to get to shore and keep his son afloat,” said Phillips.

Darren said he believed it would have been a very different outcome had the lifesavers not been training in the area.

“He really had no idea how dangerous the surf was when he went in. When he became caught in the rip he just panicked,” he said.

NSW Lifesaving Manager Dean Storey has commended the lifesavers bravery and dedication in performing an outstanding rescue in very challenging conditions, “they did a great job and all their training and hard work came into play,” he said.

Storey adds that this close call also highlights the risks of swimming at unpatrolled times.

“SLSNSW has made planning your trip to the beach a lot easier, see Beachsafe or download the free app ‘beachsafe’ for patrolled locations and times and all safety information,” he urges.

For more information and previous recipients visit the Rescue of the Month page.

Fri 21 Dec 2012