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Man praised for saving teens from drowning

Monday 4 Feb 2013 6:31 a.m.

Kariotahi Beach in Waiuku (file)

Kariotahi Beach in Waiuku (file)

South Auckland police are praising a Pukekohe man who saved at least one of three teenagers from drowning near Waiuku.

The three young men, one aged 16 and two aged 17, were swimming at Kariotahi Beach about 7.30pm last night when they were caught in a rip and swept out to sea.

One managed to swim to shore and spoke to Brendan Pooley who was at the beach with his wife and children.

He immediately took his body board into the water, and after 15-minutes found one of the teenagers who could make his own way to shore. Nearly 50 minutes after entering the water he managed to pull the third to the beach.

Mr Pooley says it was instinct to strip off and dive into the rough waves with his body board.

“When I heard someone calling, I thought there must be someone out there. I couldn’t see anyone so I went out there and I could see the waves were pretty big then I saw two heads.”

Mr Pooley’s wife drove to the top of the coastal hills to find phone reception to call the police.

Police arrived about 9.30pm. The swimmers were checked by surf lifesavers and did not need medical treatment.

Constable Andy Shaw praised Mr Pooley’s actions saying they were particularly courageous given the conditions and the fact that he had entered the water in darkness.

RadioLIVE / 3 News

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