Children saved by CCTV operators who spotted them in sea

Two children were rescued after getting into difficulty playing on an inflatable in the sea at Mablethorpe, thanks to the use of CCTV operators.

Mablethorpe beach
Mablethorpe beach

A duty CCTV operator was monitoring cameras covering Mablethorpe’s Queen’s Park when he first observed the children in difficulty on Wednesday, August 3 playing on a black rubber ring in the sea at Mablethorpe approximately 150 metres out from the beach.They were struggling to paddle back, and seen moving out further to sea, and the duty CCTV operator contacted Lincolnshire Police while another operator kept a close watch on the children.

A lifeboat was then deployed, with RNLI lifeguards at the scene and police also attended.

All the time, the CCTV operators kept observing the children in distress and were able to quickly dispel false information given at the scene that the owners of the inflatable were back on the shore, which eventually led to a RNLI lifeguard entering the sea where he swam 800m to safely rescue them.

The children were checked over by paramedics, and luckily were able to go home an hour later.

The district’s 24/7 CCTV monitoring is a partnership approach which operates from a shared control room at Boston Borough Council.

Coun Steve Kirk, portfolio holder for ELDC’s Coastal Economy, said: “This could have been a very tragic incident if it was not for the two CCTV operators’ observations, quick reporting and factual updates given to the emergency services during what was a fast-moving live incident. This could have had sad and devastating consequences.

“As well as this incident, the RNLI lifeguards have made other rescues involving inflatables in recent days on our coastline.

“The message is simple – don’t bring inflatables when visiting our beautiful beaches. They may appear to be a fun, beach accessory but we know how dangerous they can be and how quickly the current in the North Sea can change.

"You can quickly drift further into sea and even the best swimmers can get into difficulty.

“We want everyone who comes to the Lincolnshire coast for the day or on holiday to have a safe and enjoyable experience every time they visit.

"Please do not risk the dangers that come with taking an inflatable out to sea.”