Close call: Surfers rescue children from drowning at Bali beach

Lifeguards train for rescue operations at Kuta Beach in Bali.
PHOTO: The Jakarta Post/Asia News Network

Several foreign tourists who happened to be surfing at Kuta Beach in Bali turned into lifeguards to save five children from drowning on Sunday.

The incident took place when the beach was crowded with visitors next to the Discovery Kartika Plaza mall. The five children were swimming when a strong current suddenly swept them away.

"Several surfers helped us rescue them," Badung coastguard coordinator Ketut Ipel said.

Ipel said lifeguards had rushed to rescue the victims using rescue boards and jet skis. "Our ambulance rushed them to the hospital immediately. We are grateful that all the victims are now safe," Ipel said.

Four of the victims were identified as Rapa, 8, Galuh, 12, Febrian, 11, and Alpian,10.

Ipel reminded adult tourists enjoying their time at the beach to be more vigilant and attend their children.

"Please always check for the warning signs we install at certain areas of the beach. Don't swim in the danger zones," he said.

Ipel said tourists might be unaware of the danger from strong undercurrents on an apparently calm beach.

"The waves may not be high, as was the case on Sunday, but many undercurrents are rather strong," he said.