Volunteer surf lifesavers were kept on their toes this weekend, with more than 60 rescues performed in NSW and two people requiring CPR, with a middle-aged man sadly unable to be revived at Coffs Harbour on Saturday.
The man was pulled from the water just before midday at Park Beach, some 300m north of the patrol flags, initially semi-conscious and breathing.
Patrolling members reacted quickly and in short time an ambulance was requested, however the man soon became unresponsive and CPR was conducted first by volunteer lifesavers and then by NSW Ambulance paramedics.
The severity of the incident also saw the Westpac Helicopter requested for assistance.
Unfortunately, despite the consistent and considered efforts of those on scene, the man was pronounced deceased at 12.42pm.
Welfare was provided on scene to those involved and further support will be offered.
Sunday morning saw continued large and powerful surf across much of the coast and emergency services were quick to act when a young surfer was found unconscious at the southern end of Newport Beach in Sydney shortly before 10.30am.
The local in his early 20s was surfing with some mates at the popular break when he went under a wave and surfaced unconscious and not breathing.
The nearby surfers, some of whom were members of the Newport Beach SLSC, reacted quickly and hauled the patient onto a board and signalled for assistance to the patrol on shore.
The Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB) was launched immediately and the crew were amazed to find a lull in the large surf at precisely the right time to allow them to get out beyond the break safely.
Within no time the crew had secured the patient aboard the IRB and had him back on shore where CPR was immediately commenced. Shortly after he began to breath and expelled a large amount of seawater but remained unconscious.
Emergency services attended including NSW Police, three NSW Ambulance crews and the CareFlight Rescue Helicopter which landed on a nearby football field. The specialist medical team from CareFlight was able to assist intensive care paramedics to treat the young man for inhalation of seawater and stabilised him for road transport to hospital.
NSW Ambulance Inspector Charnan Kurth said the early intervention by surfers and lifesavers saved the young man’s life.
“Thank you to the lifesavers and bystanders who were a huge help today. Our paramedics assisted the Medical Team in stabilising him for transport to hospital.
“After inhaling seawater he had the potential to rapidly decline in condition. Drownings can occur in seconds – we have to be constantly looking out for each other,” said Insp Kurth.
Monday 13 December 2021