A teenage girl was pulled from the North Sea and saved from drowning on Saturday as heroic on-lookers stepped in to help.
The incident happened in Whitley Bay, North Tyneside on Saturday when the 15-year-old girl, who was with three other girls of a similar age, got into trouble in the water.
Eyewitnesses recalled how two men already in the water rushed to the teenager’s aid and kept a girl a float.
Owner of the nearby Northerly Swell Surfside Emporium Mark Ward rushed into the water to help bring the girl to safety.
There a woman, who identified herself as a nurse, began administering CPR to the girl while emergency services were called to the scene.
It reportedly took almost a minute and a half for the girl to begin responding to the CPR.
A paddleboard was used as a makeshift stretcher to take the girl up the beach to the ambulance, from the water’s edge.
Mark said: “The extraordinary bravery and rapid response demonstrated by the first nurse on the scene played a pivotal role in saving the young girl's life.
“It was later revealed that one of the gentlemen who initially held the girl afloat in the sea was the nurse's husband.
“This incident showcased the remarkable willingness of both the public and emergency services to spring into action during a time of crisis. Thanks to their collective efforts, the life of the young girl was saved, and her friends, who were treated for shock, were spared potential tragedy.”
The four girls were all taken to hospital in Cramlington by ambulance. A fifth patient made their own way to hospital.
The incident happened on the day of the Whitley Bay carnival, with thousands in attendance basking in the sunshine.
In a spate of luck yesterday marked the first day of RNLI lifeguards being stationed along the beach, while the St John’s Ambulance was in attendance for the carnival, meaning there were multiple emergency workers able to respond.
The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade was also called to the scene. A spokesperson added: “We were tasked by the Coastguard to a report of a person pulled from the water.
“She was critically ill but was improving by the time we arrived.
“We were very fortunate that we didn’t have a fatality yesterday.”
Devon and Cornwall Police confirmed at lunchtime that two men in their twenties died on Saturday after being rescued from the water.
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Mark Ward added: "Even though it was a lovely day yesterday the sea is still a relatively low temperature and it doesn't take anyone long to get into trouble.
A North East Ambulance Service spokesperson said: "We were called to reports of an incident at Central Lower Promenade in Whitley Bay shortly before 4pm on Saturday, 27 May.
"We dispatched two ambulance crews, a rapid response paramedic and a clinical team leader, and transported four patients to Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital. A fifth patient was also assessed on scene and made their own way to hospital."