Photos: Responders Battle Heavy Surf After Nine Swept Out to Sea

wave action RNLI
Matt Price / RNLI

Published Nov 2, 2020 12:09 AM by The Maritime Executive

Last Wednesday, the RNLI St. Ives lifeboat and RNLI lifeguards were among the emergency services that responded to a major incident at Top Cove, near Gwithian, Cornwall, after nine people were swept into the sea by a giant wave.

The photos show the St. Ives. lifeboat alongside RNLI lifeguard Barney Stevens (on a jet-ski) tackling huge swell from Hurricane Epsilon in order to respond to the incident. Another four lifeguards made their way over by land.

All images courtesy Matt Price / RNLI

The St. Ives RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew had left work and home to respond to the emergency and launched their all weather lifeboat.

On arrival, they found that all nine casualties were out of the water. The lifeguards worked with the Coastguard to triage and treat the casualties, who had a range of injuries from cuts and bruises to water inhalation. After standing by to ensure everyone was safe, the lifeboat crew returned to station. 

"‘We have been experiencing massive swell hitting the coast and there have been a huge number of interventions made by lifeguards to keep the public safe," said Tom Mansell, RNLI Lead Lifesaving Manager. "This was a fantastic multi agency effort which included our colleagues in the emergency services as well as many members of the public."