Coolum lifeguards save surfer found floating unconscious

TWO quick-thinking lifeguards have been praised for snatching an unconscious surfer from the Coolum surf just metres from the rocks of Point Perry.

The man, believed to be aged 20, was rushed to shore where waiting paramedics confirmed he still had a pulse before racing him to Nambour Hospital.

He was late yesterday listed as stable.

Northern lifeguard supervisor Anthony King said the duo had powered to the scene on a jet ski and sled, managing to snatch the man from the water in their first sweep through the chop near the rocks.

"It was exceptional work. They've done a great job," Mr King said.

He said the lifeguards, John Wadding and Jake McKellar, had recently been training to learn new methods of lifting unconscious limp bodies from the surf.

He credited the training as helping effect the skilful retrieval.

The pair had been on duty all Saturday and were packing up when a panicked beachgoer rushed up to inform them the surfer was floating face down in the surf at the southern end of the beach.

"They retrieved the guy pretty close to the rocks. If they hadn't got him on the first sweep, it could have been a different story," Mr King said

He confirmed the man had a head injury, but the cause remained a mystery.

"Whether he hit his head on the rocks, or hit his own surfboard, or hit his head on the bottom, we don't know."

"We were facing the worst sort of outcome, (but) hopefully he's improved in health and will make a full recovery."



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