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Near Drowning @ Moama

Near Drowning @ Moama

Young Girl Lucky Not To Have Drowned Following Incident At Moama Beach

A 12 year old girl was lucky not to have drowned after she was dragged out by a strong current into the middle of the Murray River on Saturday morning.

The girl was with her friends at the Moama Beach and was overheard telling the others she didn't feel confident to swim across the river.

Ten minutes later passersby were alerted by cries for help.

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Owner of Rochester's 'Splash n Learn To Swim', Maree Macague, told the community the story via her social media, as it was her daughter's partner who rescued the girl.

Maree said the event only emphasised the need for everyone to learn how to swim.

"As my daughter was getting in the river, she heard these young girls who were playing in the water say 'let's go across the river'. One girl did appear nervous and said 'I don't think I can make it'.

"Five to ten minutes later, there was yelling and screaming as this poor girl was getting dragged down the middle of the Murray River. She was yelling out. There had been a paddlesteamer go by about 5 minutes before this happened. She was stuck out there. The current is so strong at the minute.

"Luckily, she was floating on her back, so she knew to roll over. That was awesome.

"There was a discussion on the bank. One guy had his little boy, so he couldn't go. Another couple said they didn't have that swimming ability to take off after her. Pete, who is used to swimming in the river, then swam about 300 metres down from the beach to get her back onto the edge.

"If she'd gone under, she would've been lost. Once you're in that situation, you need some kind of survival stroke to get you to the edge. We teach them to use any survival stroke and not to panic. It doesn't matter how far you are away. I mean, if a paddlesteamer had come along, well, they can't get out of the way.

"Kids play around the backyard pool and they know how to get to the edge. But to be put out into another environment, even a big 50 metre pool, is totally different to playing in the backyard pool. The parents often think their child can actually do more than they can because they see them in the backyard pool and they're very confident.

"Some parents get a bit embarrassed if they're booking the kids in at 5 or 6 years old because they haven't started them early. It doesn't matter. Just start."

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