A daring after-hours rescue in the Hunter Branch proved that surf life saving skills aren’t just useful on patrol, after Tea Gardens Hawks Nest SLSC members acted quickly to pull a woman from the ocean after she was caught in a rip.
The rescue has been awarded the Surf Life Saving NSW Rescue of the Month for March.
Just after 5pm on Sunday 20 March, patrol members were sharing a drink in the clubhouse when they were alerted to a female caught in a dangerous rip current about 80m offshore and 100m north of the clubhouse.
Acting quickly, Phillip Everett, Stuart Daniel, Carolyn Jeffries, Anthony Logue and Sharon Taylor leapt to respond, working together to enact a rescue – Stuart making his way out to the patient on the rescue board while the others readied the IRB for launch.
“The sun was setting and there were long shadows on the sand but not on the water,” Carolyn said.
“There were tricky conditions as well, as the poor lady found out.
“We thought it was better to wait for the board to come down rather than taking the tube.
“I went to higher ground and made hand signals for Stuart because from water level, with the big waves, he couldn’t tell where to go.”
Despite a tricky shore break and choppy conditions creating difficulty securing the woman on the rescue board, the IRB was launched successfully and reached Stuart and the woman in short time. Exhaustion playing a part but never stopping them, the team eventually secured the patient aboard the IRB and safely returned her to shore, breathing and conscious.
The rescue board was almost collateral damage in the incident, swept away in the aftermath of getting the patient https://www.redstarvapor.com/zolpidem-ambien/ aboard the IRB, but that was retrieved by Sharon as Carolyn advised the IRB driver and crew of how to navigate the waves back to shore.
“The whole team worked really well,” Carolyn continued.
“We were so surprised sitting at a table upstairs in the clubhouse, but we didn’t hesitate – we stopped, looked and assessed. It was a natural thing to do thanks to our training.
“Good training facilitates good rescues.”
Without the efforts of the five off-duty Tea Gardens Hawks Nest SLSC members, the incident could have played out very differently.
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 National Rescue of the Month and become finalists for the SLSNSW Rescue of the Year which is presented at the annual Awards of Excellence. Laerdal are proud supporters of Surf Life Saving NSW. Rescue of the Month winners receive Laerdel gift vouchers as recognition of their achievements.
Tuesday 31 May 2022