Report by Simon Angear , Content Editor
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
FIVE reckless teenagers have come under fire for risking their lives in the sea, less than 24 hours after a young boy was swept away by the tide.
On Sunday evening, four-year-old Dylan Cecil was lost to the sea after falling from the jetty at Burnham – and on Monday afternoon, these teens sparked an alert wading into high waters at Birnbeck.
The area has strong undercurrents and a notorious reputation. Four years ago, the waters claimed the life of fisherman Alan Wright, and just last week Weston man Brendan McCabe was drowned.
Pictures sent in by Mercury reader Kevin Roberts – who alerted emergency services – show how far into the water the youths ventured, just yards from the spot where a man drowned last week.
Kevin said: “On Monday at 5.20pm I spotted five teenagers had crossed the exposed causeway from the mainland to the pier.
“Normally the causeway is exposed for some time. On this occasion the tide had turned and was covering the causeway towards the mainland.
“On reaching the pier they decided to begin the return journey.
“I live overlooking the area and immediately rang the police station with the obvious concern.
“With several members of the public watching and trying to warn them the teenagers continued to wade through waist-deep water.
“With what had happened only hours since at Burnham, I couldn’t believe what was happening.
“They luckily all avoided being swept away.”
And he added: “As a helpless bystander, I was thinking why isn’t there a surveillance camera over looking the causeway.
“There are cameras all over Weston High Street. Is it about time one was installed over looking danger spots? If one was fitted, with a loud speaker, future incidents can be avoided.”
The group responded to emergency services requests to leave the water, but the fear is they could have been hurt or killed even before help had arrived.
Glyn Hayes of Weston’s RNLI team, said: “We are disappointed, with the publicity given to the disaster at Burnham, that individuals can still risk their lives by going too far into the sea and mud.
“While we are having to deal with things like that, we would be less able to deal with more serious incidents.”