Grandfather and grandson swept out to sea on paddleboards

Grandfather and grandson swept out to sea on paddleboards

"The water and wind conditions were too much, we just couldn’t turn around"
Stock image - Close up shot of paddleboarding on the water

A grandfather has learned the importance of checking the weather forecast and safety signage, after he and his 11-year-old grandson were swept out to sea while paddleboarding.

Both were enjoying the activity during a trip to Skegness at the end of July, when the weather took a turn for the worst.

Within five minutes of being on the water, the pair was blown more than 200 yards from the beach, all the while drifting away from each other.

“I remember the moment I thought this is too far, let’s go back, but we couldn’t. The water and wind conditions were too much, we just couldn’t turn around,” said the grandfather, 65.

“We just started to drift away and we needed to get back. I kept looking towards the shore but couldn’t see anyone. All I could see was my wife, so I started paddling and waving more vigorously so it was clear we were in trouble.”

After the wife’s swift call to the Coastguard, Skegness, Wrangle and Mablethorpe Coastguard Rescue Teams and the inshore lifeboat from Skegness RNLI were sent to the scene.

Lifeguards were already on hand to assist, before the lifeboat recovered the grandson to safety. Both were then checked over by the Coastguard Rescue Teams and East Midlands Ambulance Service.

Reflecting on what happened, the grandfather said: “I didn’t feel panic or in danger as I knew the Coastguard would be coming for us, all I could think about was my grandson as his safety was my responsibility. I don’t think he realised just how much danger he was actually in.

“I felt terrible for taking him out in the first place and it will be a hard thing to get over.

“I want to pay tribute to the brilliant work of the lifeguards who initially came out to us on their boards, the RNLI crew that rescued my grandson, and the Coastguard.”

Senior Coastal Operations Officer Tom Sharp said: “Paddleboarding is great fun, it’s something we all love to do in the summer, but it is so important to be prepared, be aware of the risks and know what to do in an emergency.

“Despite falling victim to the poor weather, these two were equipped correctly and knew to call the Coastguard when there was risk of getting into danger.

“Paddleboards are very susceptible to the wind and are easily blown offshore, so check the weather forecast and tide times before you leave.”

The grandfather added: “My biggest take from this is to always check and read the signs, check the weather and tides and accept sometimes you shouldn’t go out, even if you really want to.

“Always be brave and make the decision to not go out, if it doesn’t feel completely right or safe do not do it.”

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