Boy, 10, swept out to sea 'saved by following TV show advice'

Victoria Bell
·3-min read
Scarborough is a town on the North Sea coast of North Yorkshire.  Castle Hill separates the seafront into two bays to the North and South
The boy survived for more than an hour at sea after being swept out by the tide and wind across South Bay at Scarborough, North Yorkshire, pictured, on Friday. (Getty)

A 10-year-old boy managed to save himself from drowning by following advice from a TV programme.

The boy, who has not been identified, survived for more than an hour at sea after being swept out by the tide and wind across South Bay at Scarborough, North Yorkshire, on Friday.

The Scarborough lifeboat team was called at around 19:20 BST on Friday after the boy was reported missing near the town's spa.

The three-strong team were left “in awe” after finding the remarkably “calm lad” near Vincent Pier floating on his back, with his arms and legs spread shouting for help – following the advice the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) gives to anyone in the water needing assistance.

Lee Marton, Coxswain at Scarborough Lifeboat Station, said: “We were told that he’d been watching lifeboat rescues on the BBC documentary Saving Lives At Sea and had followed the advice given on the show.

“We’re very much in awe of this incredible lad, who managed to remain calm and follow safety advice to the letter in terrifying and stressful circumstances.

“Had he not, the outcome might have been very different.”

The boy was escorted to the lifeboat station, where he was reunited with his family before being taken for a precautionary check-up at Scarborough Hospital.

Saving Lives At Sea follows the men and women of the RNLI.

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On Sunday, a father of seven died helping to save three of his children from drowning on Barmouth Beach in Gwynedd, north Wales.

Jonathan Stevens, 36, from Telford, Shropshire, was at the popular spot with three of his children when the youngsters began to struggle in the water after being caught in a riptide at lunchtime on Sunday.

He tried to pull the children, aged between 10 and 12, to safety but succumbed to the strong rip current himself.

Sign for the Royal National Lifeboat Institute lifeboats
The RNLI is urging the public to try and stay calm if you find yourself in trouble at sea and float on your back with your arms and legs splayed. (Getty)

A major rescue operation was launched, with a lifeboat and Coastguard rescue helicopter dispatched, and he was pulled from the water.

Stevens was given medical care at the scene before being airlifted to Ysbyty Gwynedd hospital, where he died.

Read more: Glee star Naya Rivera saved son before drowning

As many people visit beaches during the summer season, the RNLI is urging the public to follow this potentially lifesaving advice if they find themselves in trouble in cold water:

  • Fight your instinct to swim hard or thrash about – this can lead to breathing in water and drowning

  • Instead, relax and FLOAT on your back, until you have regained control of your breathing

If you or your children are struggling in the water, remember: FLOAT TO LIVE. If you see anyone injured or in distress on the coast, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.