Sea Palling: Swimmers urged to stay in safe areas of the sea where man died

Sea Palling beach

Sea Palling beach

Bathers were yesterday in the part of the sea at Sea Palling where two men got into difficulties at the weekend, leading to the death of one of them.

Following the tragedy, the RNLI renewed pleas for swimmers to stay within patrolled areas.

Saturday's drama happened in an area of rip currents, about 800m outside the clearly-flagged stretch of beach observed by lifeguards.

A 54-year-old man died and another man, aged 26 was seriously hurt.

Yesterday, Norwich friends Will Warnes, Kyle Hewett and Reece Lyness, all aged 20, had been about to dive into the sea at an unpatrolled part of the beach when a lifeguard approached them.

'She asked us if we would swim in the patrolled area, so we did,' said Mr Warnes. 'We only go in neck deep and mess about anyway. We had heard about the drowning but you can't stop your life.'

Grandparents Christine and Anthony Stanmore, from Shefford, Bedfordshire, said they had taken granddaughter Lilly, five, to an unpatrolled area of beach because the lifeguard section close by was out of bounds to dogs and they had pet spaniel Mocha with them. 'Lilly only ever paddles anyway and we both keep an eagle eye on her,' said Mr Stanmore.

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A father from Trowse watched as his son and a friend swam close to the sandbank where the men came to grief. The man, who did not want to be identified, said he was aware of the drowning but had grown up in Australia and could recognise and handle rips.

Marysia Cooke, from Bourne, Lincolnshire, was sitting near the tragedy site with members of her family, including three children.

She called for more notices around the danger area to warn people: 'It looks like a safe lagoon and I think people think the rip is the other side of the rocks, not this side,' she added.

If caught in a rip current:

• Don't fight the current

• Swim out of the current, then to shore

• If you can't escape, float or tread water

• If you need help, call or wave for assistance

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