Mar 10,2008 00:00
CUTLER, Ore. - An 11-year-old boy was killed Saturday and a 16-year-old boy is still missing after they were swept out to sea by a rip current at Gleneden Beach near Cutler, Oregon.
The 11-year-old child, a resident of Westfir, was identified as River Jenison. He died Saturday at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital following extensive lifesaving efforts by medical personnel, Oregon State Police said.
At 1:10 p.m., the Coast Guard received a request for assistance from the Lincoln City, Ore., 911 center after a beachgoer reported that the two boys were pulled out to sea.
A 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from Station Depoe Bay was launched to search for the victims at 1:13 p.m., and a helicopter crew from Air Station North Bend also joined the search minutes later.
Around 1:45 p.m., Lincoln City Fire and Rescue recovered the 11-year-old boy.
The missing 16-year-old boy reportedly attempted to help with the rescue effort before disappearing. The motor lifeboat and helicopter crews continued to search for the second boy until 7 p.m.
The Coast Guard reminds beachgoers to be safe, prepared and to remain aware of possible dangers.
A riptide is a strong flow of water returning seaward from the shore. Such currents can be extremely dangerous, dragging swimmers away from the beach and leading to drowning when they attempt to fight the current and become exhausted.
Riptides cause approximately 100 deaths annually in the United States, more than all other natural hazards except heat and lightning.
When caught in a rip current, one should not fight it, but rather swim parallel to the shoreline in order to leave it.Floating until the current disperses into deeper waters is another method of surviving such a dangerous incident, but it may leave the swimmer farther out from shore.