A near drowning took place in the river at Brunswick Heads Tuesday February 19 at around 11am.
An 18 year old local male was snorkelling with his friend and diving and holding his breath between the Brunswick Harbour and the Massy Greene holiday park. When he didn’t come to the surface following a dive his friend alerted two men in a passing tinny who came to her aid and were able to tow the man to the beach. A local fisherman jumped into the water to help bring the unconscious man out of the water.
‘He had blue lips when we pulled him out. Another young guy who was an ex-lifeguard came to help and started CPR while I called the ambulance,’ said the fisherman.
The police arrived ten minutes later and took over CPR until the ambulance arrived five to six mixtures after that. The paramedics then proceeded with CPR and treatment.
‘People were going all over Brunswick to get help and look for a defibrillator. Eventually the staff from the Brunswick Hotel arrived with one and they tried to revive him,’ he said.
‘The young male went into cardiac arrest when he was pulled from the water,’ a spokesperson from Ambulance NSW confirmed.
‘He was unconscious and unresponsive when he was pulled from the water,’ said Detective Inspector Matt Kehoe from the Tweed/Byron police.
The Westpac helicopter wasn’t available until 1.15pm so the paramedics continued treatment and the unconscious man was taken by road ambulance to Tweed Heads Hospital in a critical condition.
He remains in the intensive care unit Tweed Heads Hospital.
‘At no point has he regained consciousness,’ said Detective Kehoe.
Call for witnesses
‘Members of the public and his 24 year-old female friend did exceptional jobs bringing him to the surface and removing him from the water and starting CPR in confronting circumstances, as did the police and ambulance,’ said Detective Inspector Matt Kehoe from the Tweed/Byron police.
Witnesses are being asked to contact the Byron police station 6685 9499 if they haven’t already provided their details or a statement.