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Laguna Beach

Marine Safety Files

Family rescued from rip current at Bird Rock Beach, husband unconscious and remains in hospital

On Thursday, Sept 5, at 2:50 p.m., at the 300 block of Cliff Drive, LBFD, LBPD, and Laguna Beach Lifeguards responded to a report of swimmers in distress. 

According to Marine Safety Capt Kai Bond, “Lifeguards responded to a call for a multi-person rescue at Bird Rock Beach. Lifeguards arrived on scene and found a semi-conscious victim floating on her back and quickly pulled her out of the water.”

“Once on scene it was discovered that three subjects, two females and one male, were caught in a rip current,” LBPD Spokesperson PIO Sgt Jim Cota said. “The male had gone into the water to rescue his wife and daughter. The daughter was rescued and safely came to shore.”

The wife and husband had to be rescued and were unconscious when brought onto the sand. 

“Lifeguards found an unconscious male that had submerged and pulled him out of the water,” Capt Bond said. “Lifeguards performed CPR on the unconscious male victim and paramedics from LBFD arrived on scene and provided life support.”

The wife was resuscitated and was transported to Mission Hospital, Laguna Beach. 

According to Capt Bond, she was released later that evening.

“The husband was taken to Mission Hospital, Mission Viejo as they were able to re-establish a pulse and he was placed in ICU for advanced medical treatment,” Sgt Cota said.

As of press time, his condition is unknown.

Missing late-night swimmer located a mile north is flown to Hoag Hospital via helicopter

On Friday, Sept 6, at 10:50 p.m., LBPD, LBFD, and Marine Safety responded to Main Beach in reference to a missing swimmer.

According to Capt Bond, “Lifeguards, LBPD, and LBFD received a call for a missing swimmer at north Main Beach. The reporting party said a female subject entered the water and they never saw her return to the shore.”

According to Sgt Cota, “A female adult was identified by her personal belongings left behind when she went into the ocean to ‘rinse off.’” 

Sgt Cota said, “The reporting party did not know her but saw her on the beach prior to going into the ocean. She was stretching and doing yoga poses on the sand before she entered the water and did not return.” 

A group of concerned citizens searched for her for approximately 15-20 minutes prior to calling emergency services for help.

Sgt Cota said, “A unified command post was established at the Marine Safety Headquarters and outside resources such as an OCSD helicopter and OCSD Harbor Patrol were requested. A search pattern was established and responding units searched for over an hour. All resources were eventually called off with two lifeguards and an officer to remain on scene in case she were to appear.”

“Lifeguards thoroughly searched the area and at approximately 12:48 a.m. the victim was located conscious and breathing a mile off shore in front of Shaw’s Cove,” Capt Bond said. “She swam north to Shaw’s Cove and out to sea. She was [allegedly] possibly intoxicated.”

 US Coast Guard was requested by the fire department and located the missing swimmer. 

Capt Bond said, “She was transported via helicopter to Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach for a medical evaluation. She’s expected to make a full recovery.”

Conditions were 2 to 3-foot waves when the swimmer, described as a female approximately 40 years old, went missing. 

“It’s nighttime, which presents its own challenge to locate someone, especially when they’re in the ocean,” Capt Bond said. “It’s very dangerous to swim at night.”

He advises to always “swim in front of an open lifeguard tower, know your limitations, swim during daylight hours only, and swim with a buddy.”

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