A woman was rescued from sea water in Burnham-On-Sea on Sunday evening (October 13th) thanks to the quick-thinking actions of a seafront walker.
Emergency services were called to The Esplanade shortly after 7pm, as pictured here.
A Burnham-On-Sea Coastguard spokesman said: “A person had entered the water along the town slipway as the tide was rushing across it and they were clinging to a sign.”
“A keen-eyed passer-by had spotted them and was instantly on the phone dialling 999 and asking for the Coastguards to report what he had seen.”
“While this was happening another member of the public who was out walking his dog saw what was happening and sprang into action, grabbing a throwline from the Council-provided life ring box and threw it to the person in difficulty.”
“But the person was now in the water and was too far away to be reached with the line and getting further away.”
“Lots of things were happening behind the scenes and the member of the public was still talking to the ops room as our team were paged to respond, along with Burnham-On-Sea RNLI Lifeboats.”
“Our team immediately kitted up for a snatch rescue which means overalls, boots, helmet and lifejacket and entails the Coastguard Rescue Officer entering the water on a line to swim to the person and drag them in which in this weather is cold but something we train for.”
“Luckily for the two Coastguards, the lifeboats were just touching the water and were quick to pull the person into the lifeboat for a fast return to the shore to a combination of Coastguards and RNLI members in PPE with a stretcher to transport them to the awaiting ambulance.”
“The Coastguard Helicopter that was nearby and hovering overhead was able to head off back to base and the Avon and Somerset Police units who were on-scene were impressed with the speed at which this rescue took place.”
He added: “A very quick and efficient rescue with a positive outcome, all thanks to the initial call from a member of our community who did an amazing job of calling it in without hesitation and to one of our former Coastguard team members who was quick to act with the throwline.”
“Don’t forget to keep yourself safe when in these situations we don’t extra persons in danger or worse. If you see anyone in difficulty do the exact thing our community hero did and dial 999 asking for the Coastguards.”
Crews on the jetty during Sunday’s incident (Photo: Burnham Coastguard)
Seafront walkers took these shots of the rescue helicopter in the sky during the incident.