SPRING LAKE — The Spring Lake Police Department responded to two separate incidents of swimmers in distress on Tuesday, Oct. 4, according to a press release posted to the department’s Facebook page.
The incidents took place at the Sussex Avenue and Passaic Avenue beaches and involved five and three distressed swimmers respectively, for a total of eight across both beaches. All the swimmers were eventually rescued.
The department’s dispatch center received the Sussex Avenue report at 2:48 p.m., according to the Facebook post. Several officers from the Spring Lake police department entered the water to help the victims, including Ptl. Joseph Liddy, Ptl. James Heine and Chief Edward Kerr, as well as several other individuals: Spring Lake Heights Ptl. Matthew Bogdan, a “retired law enforcement officer,” and an off-duty lifeguard, according to the Facebook post.
Together, they were able to rescue all five swimmers, though one swimmer required several more minutes to rescue because of the rip currents at the time. The Spring Lake First Aid Squad also responded to the incident, treating and releasing all of the victims at the scene.
The Passaic Avenue report came in at 4:20 p.m. The three victims were “out past the jetty in distress,” according to the Facebook post. As in the earlier rescue, officers entered the water to rescue the swimmers, including Ptl. Joseph Liddy and Sergeants Sean Duggan and Christopher Kucinski. They did so alongside a “good Samaritan” and an off-duty lifeguard, according to the Facebook post.
The Spring Lake First Aid squad treated the three swimmers at the second rescue, one of whom was transported to the Jersey Shore University Medical Center.
Both rescues were assisted by the Spring Lake Fire Department, Sea Girt Police Department and Sea Girt Beach Patrol, Spring Lake Heights Police Department, Belmar Police Department, and off-duty lifeguards with the SMART Team, according to the Facebook post.
The post included drone footage courtesy of Michael Clancy, an individual who was in the area at the time, according to Captain Timothy Giblin. The Spring Lake Police Department warned of the dangers of swimming in the kind of harsh conditions that may be present, especially due to recent storms, and strongly urged people who are not “strong swimmers” to avoid swimming in the ocean.
This is an excerpt of the print article. For more on this story, read The Coast Star—on newsstands Thursday or online in our e-Edition.
Subscribe today! If you're not already an annual subscriber to The Coast Star, get your subscription today! For just $38 per year, you will receive local mail delivery weekly, with pages and pages of local news and online access to our e-edition on Starnewsgroup.com.