Search resumes for missing boy caught in rip

Published: 07 December 2017 Image credit: Supplied

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Authorities have ‘grave’ concerns for an 11-year-old boy, feared drowned after he was dragged out to sea by a rip at a beach on the NSW mid-north coast.

The boy, who is believed to be from the ACT, was walking with his 17-year-old brother in waist-deep water on an unpatrolled part of Port Macquarie’s Lighthouse Beach when he was caught in hazardous surf at about 1.30pm yesterday.

“The 11-year-old was last seen pulled out to sea by a rip,” NSW Police Inspector Peter Neville told reporters.

The boy’s mother witnessed her elder son attempt to rescue the 11-year-old after he was sucked into the surf, but authorities say he wasn’t able to do anything further, and was himself exhausted by the experience.

He was treated by paramedics at the scene.

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Locals say Lighthouse Beach is notorious for dangerous swells, having claimed three lives in recent years.

“Every effort is being made to locate the missing young swimmer, we are all working together on scene,” NSW Ambulance acting Superintendent David Horseman said in a statement on Wednesday.

“The 17-year-old is now on the beach with his parents and we are all hoping we can find this young fellow.”

The search for the boy resumed this morning, after Water Police, Marine Rescue boats, a jet ski, Westpac Rescue Helicopter and Surf Life Saving NSW drone failed to find any sign of him beyond the two metre swells on Wednesday.

Lighthouse Beach has been described as notorious by locals, as it claimed the lives of a mother and daughter in 2002, and a 69-year-old fisherman last year.