Swimmer dies after group caught in Norfolk rip current

Sea Palling Image copyright Geograph: Paul Buckingham
Image caption A group of swimmers got into trouble at Sea Palling, on the Norfolk coast

A man has died and another is said to be in a serious condition after a group of swimmers got caught up in a rip current in Norfolk.

The men were pulled unconscious from the water at Sea Palling, near Great Yarmouth, shortly before midday.

A 54-year-old man died while a 26-year-old man was airlifted to the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.

Members of the public pulled them out of the sea, the RNLI said.

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The East of England Ambulance Service said paramedics treated two men, "both in cardiac arrest".

A spokesman said: "Sadly a man, believed to be in his 50s, died at the scene."

'Not breathing'

A coastguard spokeswoman said: "Quite a number of people went into the water to help. There were two people that needed medical attention."

Image caption The RNLI said lifeguards were helped by members of the public

Four men got into difficulties about 800m away from the lifeguarded area, the RNLI said.

Jack Hood, RNLI lifeguard supervisor, said: "It appears these four men got into distress in the water because of one of the notorious rips that can occur off this coast.

"One of our lifeguards immediately started CPR on the 54-year-old, assisted by a member of the public who declared he was a medic. Meanwhile, a member of the public who had experience of first aid was giving CPR to the 26-year-old, so our lifeguard moved her focus to take over his treatment.

"In the meantime, our other lifeguard had rushed to obtain oxygen and a defibrillator from the RNLI's beach lifeguard unit. Whilst the 26-year-old was breathing when she returned with the equipment, the 54-year-old was not."

Three land ambulances, two air ambulances, the Humber Coastguard rescue helicopter and three local coastguard teams were called to the beach along with two RNLI inshore lifeboats.

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