News, Police Rounds

Man drowns after children caught in Woonona rip

The rescue chopper on Nicholson Park, Woonona. Picture: Surf Life Saving Illawarra

A MAN has died and two children have been rescued after they were caught in a rip at Woonona on Saturday (November 21).

Emergency services were called to Woonona Beach, off Kurraba Road, about 5.40pm, responding to reports several people were in trouble at the northern end of Woonona beach.

A Wollongong City Council spokesperson said about 5.45pm lifeguards from Bulli and Thirroul beaches raced to the area, where they pulled two children and a man, believed to be in his 40s, from the water.

“The lifeguards were met on the sand by paramedics, but unfortunately the man was not able to be revived,” the spokesperson said.

Two rescue helicopter with doctors on board were called and landed in Nicholson Park. NSW Ambulance paramedics worked to resuscitate the man; however, he died at the scene.

The two children were taken to hospital for assessment.

A spokesperson from Surf Life Saving Illawarra said about 5.45pm emergency services received reports of up to eight persons in the water, who were struggling in a rip current. Surf Life Saving Illawarra duty officers and Bulli SLSC Emergency Call Out Team also attended the incident to assist.

Multiple persons were assisted in the water and kept afloat by board riders prior to lifeguards responding from Bulli and Thirroul.

“Today highlights the importance to always swim at patrolled beaches between the red and yellow flags,” a SLSC spokesperson said.

“Our thoughts are with the family and friends during this very tragic moment.”

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000.


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About Mick Roberts

A Sydney journalist, writer and historian, Mick Roberts specialises in Australian cultural history, particularly associated with the Australian hotel and liquor industry. Mick has had an interest in revealing the colourful story of pubs, inns and associated industries in Australia for over 30 years. He is currently working on a comprehensive history of the hotel and liquor industry in the Illawarra region of NSW. Besides writing a number of history books, Mick has owned and managed several community newspapers. He was one time editor of the Wollongong Northern News, The Bulli Times, The Northern Times, The Northern Leader and The Local - all located in the Wollongong region. As a journalist he has worked for Rural Press, Cumberland (News Limited), Sydney based, City News, and Torch Publications based in Canterbury Bankstown, NSW. He currently calls the inner-Sydney suburb of Surry Hills home.

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