Thousands of UK residents swarmed the beaches along England’s coastlines to take advantage of the beautiful weekend weather.
But those seeking some fun in the sun on the shores of Minehead, England, never expected things to take such a frightening turn.
While their families relaxed on the sand, a pair of 5-year-old girls ran to the water and jumped onto a giant inflatable swan float, which was tethered by a rope held by one of the girls’ fathers.
According to the Minehead Royal National Lifeboat Institution, the rope momentarily slipped out of the father’s hand. Before he had time to react, the strong winds started pushing the float away and further out in the Bristol Channel.
Panicked and distraught, the father ran into the water, but it was already too late; the float was too far away for him to grab. One of the rescue volunteers also tried grabbing the swan but to no avail.
The father shouted to the terrified girls to stay on the float while their families called 911. By this point, the float was nearly half a mile from the shore.
We’ve seen stories like this before. In 2018, a Florida mom named Tara Myers took her son on a giant inflatable swan raft just like the one in this story. It wasn’t long before the current swept the mother and son several miles out into the Gulf of Mexico. “I have never been more scared in my entire life,” she told WFLA 8.
Watch the video below to see the harrowing rescue in action. Thank goodness these girls are now safe.