Geoff Parsons went out in a boat to save a girl caught in a rip at Innes Park.
Geoff Parsons went out in a boat to save a girl caught in a rip at Innes Park. Max Fleet

Woman critical after sea rescue

AN Innes Park woman is in a critical condition at Bundaberg Hospital after helping save two children caught in a rip at Innes Park yesterday morning.

The woman, aged in her forties, went into the water to save the children after they were dragged out to sea while swimming in the lagoon.

Witnesses said a man swam into the ocean and guided the woman and one of the children to shore while another girl, who floated about 700m from the lagoon, had to be rescued by boat.

Both children returned safely but the woman was unconscious when she was taken to hospital.

A spokeswoman from Bundaberg Hospital said the woman was in a critical condition yesterday afternoon.

Witness Renee Hill said the woman had been caring for three children, between the ages of five and 10, before two of them drifted away in the current after 9.30am.

“The lady went in and she was able to reach one of the children but the little girl just floated off,” Ms Hill said.

“The lady was floating and the boy was able to use her as support. He was almost using her as a bodyboard - that's how he was able to stay afloat.”

Geoff Parsons was having a barbecue at a friend's house on the esplanade when he became part of the rescue.

“A woman came up yelling that a child had been carried away,” he said.

“We carried the boat to the water and took off.

“She was just bobbing along, about 500m north and 200m away from the inlet.

“She wasn't crying or anything, just bobbing along.

“We got her in the boat and she just acted like it was a boat ride.”

When Mr Parsons arrived back at the beach, the AGL Action Rescue Chopper and Queensland Ambulance Service had arrived.

An ambulance spokeswoman said the children were taken to hospital as a precaution.

Locals said it reinforced the need for better safety measures at Innes Park.

Bundaberg Regional Council and Surf Life Saving Queensland had put up signs at the area, but they were pulled down yesterday.

Ms Hill said the area needed more signage or even flags.



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