Teens OK after getting caught in rough surf off Bonita Springs Beach

Published: June 3, 2022 10:19 PM EDT
Updated: June 4, 2022 12:01 PM EDT

Three teens in the gulf near Bonita Springs caused a commotion when they tried swimming in rough surf.

We know thrill-seekers like being out there in a storm, but it can be dangerous. Luckily those teenagers are OK.

The fire department says a parent on the beach called 911 when they spotted the teens nearly 1,500 feet offshore.

The Bonita Springs Fire District battalion chief said they had boats on the way to help the teens. When they arrived on the scene, the boys were about 100 feet offshore and were able to make it on shore by themselves.

WINK News also saw some surfers out in the waters despite the potential dangers.

One of them said that they went out for dinner right in front of the beach and they saw the waves rolling in and had to grab them.

A spokesperson for the Bonita Fire Rescue District said they want to stress the dangers of going into the water in weather like this.

“The thing that we really need to stress home is that the threat of rip currents increases more as the tropical storm approaches the coast. And in fact, it’s the most dangerous when the storm is just about to hit anywhere between one to two days before,” said Nicole Hornberger, public information officer for the Bonita Springs Fire District.

“The thing with the board is you’re always attached to it. So you have your leash. So you can always grab onto the board and then you get away from the tie you know obviously the recurrent go further down and then come back,” said Sharon Mehalek, a part-time Bonita Springs resident.

Storms like the one that is moved in from the Gulf of Mexico can create dangerous rip currents.

Rip currents are powerful channels of water flowing quickly away from shore which occur most often at low spots or breaks in the sandbar and in the vicinity of structures such as groins, jetties, and piers. For maximum safety swim near a lifeguard. Pay attention to flags and signs.

If you become caught in a rip current, yell for help. Remain calm, do not exhaust yourself, and stay afloat while waiting for help. If you have to swim out of a rip current swim parallel to shore and back toward the beach when possible. Do not attempt to swim directly against a rip current as you will tire quickly.