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NZ Local News

Four teens swept out to sea ‘extremely lucky’ to be alive after heroic rescue by Bay Plenty Coastguard volunteers

Editor Written by Editor · 1 min read >

Four teenagers swept out to sea at a Bay of Plenty beach by a strong current are “extremely lucky” to be alive after local Coastguard volunteers leapt into action this afternoon.

About 2.30pm, volunteers of the Maketu Coastguard were at a beachside cafe when they heard screams and saw four heads bobbing in the water.

The group of four teenagers were being carried out to sea by a strong current.

“Without hesitation, Coastguard Maketu president Shane Beech rushed to the scene, alerting unit volunteers to launch the unit’s jet skis immediately,” a Coastguard statement said.

The four teenagers had become separated in the water.

Six individuals, including two brave locals who assisted in the rescue, were safely brought ashore.

“Coastguard rescuers retrieved two teenagers on the jet skis, while local surfers assisted the other two, keeping them afloat until Coastguard could return from shore to pick them up,” the statement said.

“Local Maketu first responders, along with police and off-duty lifeguards, were present to provide support and assistance.”

Two of those rescued ingested a “significant amount” of saltwater and were taken to hospital by Hato Hone St John.

Beech emphasised the importance of beachgoers familiarising themselves with local conditions, particularly the swift outgoing tide at Maketu Beach.

“This is what we train hard for, it’s what we do. We were able to respond almost instantly, and our crew performed exceptionally well.

“The teenagers were extremely lucky, and we’re just so happy that we were able to bring them back to shore safely. This incident serves as a reminder to visitors that understanding beach conditions is crucial for safety,” he said.

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