19th July 2022

Simon, from Newcastle, Tyne and Wear followed advice when his son, Evan, got into trouble in the water whilst on holiday. They were at Beadnell Bay and Evan and his friends were swimming in the water, the sea was choppy that day and the waves were big.

A man and a boy

They jumped over some waves at waist height but were unexpectedly pushed out to sea, completely out of their depth. They found themselves caught in a rip current that was quickly dragging them away from the shore. With every effort they made to get back to the beach, the current pulled them out further.

Evan’s friends made it back to shore, but Evan was so far out that he’d lost sight of the beach.

Simon says:

I was watching from the shore, I could see that Evan and his friends were struggling but it was only when the others were swimming to shore and I could see Evan was being dragged further out that I knew he was in real trouble. As a father, this is one of the most horrific situations to be in, to feel helpless when your child is in trouble. I knew that going in after him could waste valuable time and that we both might not make it back to shore. I called 999 and asked for the Coastguard.

Evan had luckily seen an RNLI video which explained that if you get into trouble in the water, you should Float to Live. He floated in the water until he made his way to a moored yacht. The RNLI Seahouses lifeboat crew then rescued Evan shortly after.

Simon says:

I have to thank the RNLI. It was incredibly difficult to not get into the water and try to save Evan myself, but ultimately that advice along with Evan floating when he got into difficulty, saved our lives that day.

For more information and to download resources, please visit the RNLI website.

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