THE bank holiday weekend nearly ended in tragedy when a man and young boy had to be rescued at the main beach in Bundoran.
On Sunday around 3pm, the man and a young boy were rescued by local surfers after getting into difficulty in a rip current at the beach which is popular for day trips among Fermanagh people.
When Bundoran RNLI attended the scene, the man in the water was being attended to by surfers, while two members of the public were attending to the boy on the beach who had been pulled out of the sea.
The RNLI lifeboat crew immediately took the man onboard and began to administer casualty care while the shore crew, one of whom is a paramedic, began to administer casualty care to the boy on the beach.
Both were being treated for the effects of swallowing a considerable amount of sea water. Casualty care on the lifeboat continued until the arrival of the Irish Coast Guard helicopter from Sligo.
The man was subsequently airlifted and brought to Sligo University Hospital while the boy was transferred to hospital by an ambulance crew.
Speaking following the call out, Tony McGowan, Bundoran RNLI lifeboat operations manager advised, “rip currents are strong currents that can quickly take swimmers from the shallows out beyond their depth.
“Should you get caught in one, try and stay calm, don’t panic. If you can stand, wade, don’t swim. Raise your hand and if you can, shout for help.
“Never try to swim against the rip or you will get exhausted. Swim parallel to the beach until free of the rip, then make way for the shore.
“We are experiencing some lovely weather in Bundoran which is seeing locals and visitors alike flocking to our beaches to enjoy themselves.”
Bundoran tourism officer Shane Smyth advised those visiting the beach to be aware of the rip current.
“Bundoran’s main beach was particularly busy owing to a combination of the northern bank holiday and also the warm weather.
“We wish those involved in Sunday’s incident a speedy recovery and remind all beach goers that while the amenity is there to be enjoyed by all, that the force and power of the ocean should not be underestimated, and safety information should be heeded.”
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