LONG BEACH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Rip currents nearly claimed the life of a boy in Nassau County.
As CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan reported, lifeguards in Long Beach rushed to save him.
The currents have been the cause of multiple rescues, including a near drowning that nearly took the life of a young teen.
There were critical moments to save struggling swimmers from Malverne. Lifeguards and firefighter paramedics from Long Beach reacted with scant seconds to spare.
“If we didn’t come down to pull him out this story is going to end a lot differently,” Chris Russo said, “It doesn’t take too much water to take someone under.”
A group of young buddies arrived after school to soak up the sun and hang out in the surf, unaware and unprepared for dangerous rip currents.
One 15-year-old boy was dragged under and did not surface.
“Three of us swam out with our torps, he swam out with a line, and these two guys pulled the line in. Once we got him laid down on the shoreline he was still unconscious at that point. We lad him down and started pushing his stomach. He started coughing up some water and we realized he was still alive,” lifeguard Todd Glazer said.
The teen had turned blue — CPR from the first responders stabilized him, and he was rushed to the hospital in critical condition.
The teens had been swimming unsupervised.
“The beach is actually closed. We don’t have lifeguards full-time until Saturday,” Chief of Long Beach Lifeguards, Paul Gillespie said.
It’s a lesson for beachgoers who witnessed the harrowing rescue and for lifeguards preparing for an uncertain ocean season ahead.
“I have a little mark from it right here from pulling it over my shoulder and pulling the victim up the beach just to get them ashore as swiftly as possible,” lifeguard, Nick Smith said.
The 15-year-old from Malverne is critical but stable. His parents were at his hospital bedside, they were grateful for the heroes who helped save their son.