Two months ago, on a seemingly normal Wednesday evening Carol Templeton had just finished teaching a CPR course at Southport Surf Life Saving club when she heard desperate screams coming from the water.
Instinct kicked in and despite the darkness she ran down to the beach to see what the commotion was.
“When I went out, there were two young males, 15 and 17, who needed assistance,” Templeton said.
“I didn’t have any equipment at the time, I just made an instinct call to go and get them.”
Templeton had been on the beach just hours earlier and knew the conditions were dangerous. She had tried to access appropriate equipment but the club was locked and she had no keys.
“It was very dark and there wasn’t much moonlight either – so it was just a matter of going towards their calls for help and you could see splashing in the white water,” she said.
“I had trained here a couple of hours previously and knew there was a deep gutter and then a sandbank.
“When I went through the gutter I could feel the sandbank near where they were and I upheld them to make sure they were ok but knew I had to go back through the gutter.
“They couldn’t touch and one was taking on a bit of water.
“I had to bring them in and do the best I could with no visibility.
“I grabbed one on each side and bounced off the bottom of the gutter, using the waves to take us towards the shore where there were others to assist by that stage.”
Templeton was exhausted by the rescue but relieved the two young men could travel home that evening.
She said it was a close call and a reminder for everyone to swim between the flags and in daylight.
“Just do not swim after dark it’s so dangerous,” she said.
“No one can see you.
“They are lucky they screamed out otherwise it could have been a double fatality.”
Article by Josie Fielding
Photos courtesy of Adam Head, Courier Mail.