A teenage off-duty lifeguard is being congratulated for single-handedly saving four swimmers who got caught in a dangerous rip at the weekend – three of them young children.
Jack Virtue was in the carpark at Wainui Beach at Gisborne on Saturday when he saw the children and their caregiver get swept out to sea.
“I just opened the door, ran out, ran down the beach ripping my clothes off and yelling for help,” he said.
Wainui Surf Lifesaving club president Salvatore Zame said the club was very proud of the teenager.
“He knew he was skillful enough to go out on into the water in those conditions and rescue them.” Mr Zame said.