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JEFFREYS BAY:At 16h10, Saturday, 6 February, NSRI Jeffreys Bay duty crew were alerted following reports of a drowning in progress at Checkers Beach, Jeffreys Bay.NSRI Jeffreys Bay rescue swimmers, EC Government Health EMS, Private Care ambulance services and Gardmed ambulance services responded.On arrival on the scene NSRI rescuers and the emergency services found a 17 year old female, from Hankey, had been rescued safely to the beach by the combined efforts of 4 local teenage girls.The casualty teenager was showing signs and symptoms of a non-fatal drowning and she was treated by paramedics in an ambulance before being released in good health requiring no further assistance.It appears that while swimming a brother and his sister, from Hankey, had been swept out to sea by rip currents.The boy had managed to get to shore safely and he was not injured but the girl was caught in strong rip currents.Local girls Lisa Stumpf, 19, and Megan Johnson, 14, who were nearby, at the beach at the time, were approached by a lady frantically asking them for help - the lady was indicating that her son and her daughter were being swept out to sea and they were in danger in the surfline.Lisa and Megan, seeing the girl and the boy in difficulty in the surfline, immediately alerted their friend Abbygail Janse van Rensburg, 14, and Lisa's twin sister Karla Stumpf, 19.They all live adjacent to that beach.Abbygail is the daughter of a founding member and former station commander of NSRI Jeffreys Bay, Rieghard Janse van Rensburg.Between them the girls raised the alarm alerting NSRI and the emergency services.At that stage the boy had reached the shore without assistance and he was safe but the girl was caught in rip currents and she continued to be swept further out to sea.The 4 local girls knew that they needed to act fast and time was of the essence so Lisa handed Abbygail a body-board to be used for floatation instead of running the hundred meters down the beach to fetch the NSRI pink rescue buoy that is stationed on that beach.Karla put on a pair of flippers and together Abbygail and Karla swam 100 meters out to sea through the surf and they reached the casualty girl who was still caught up in the rip currents.Using the body-board for floatation together Abbygail and Karla assisted the casualty girl to float and then they guided her through the breaking surf safely to the beach.At that stage NSRI Jeffreys Bay crew and paramedics were arriving at the beach and the casualty girl was medically assessed by paramedics.Following some medical treatment in an ambulance she was released requiring no further assistance.NSRI commend the 4 local girls, Abbygail Janse van Rensburg, Karla and Lisa Stumpf and Megan Johnson for their combined efforts that contributed to saving the life of the teenager.
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