Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Four rescued from powerful current at Honeymoon Island

DUNEDIN — Four people were rescued from powerful currents Thursday off Honeymoon Island, a place where the waters can occasionally be treacherous.

About 12:20 p.m., two girls ages 12 and 14 were playing in the water on the southern tip of the island when they got caught in a current that pulled them down the beach, said the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

Two male relatives, whose ages weren't given, went into the water to help the girls but also got caught in the current.

At that point, another beachgoer who witnessed the struggle went to lifeguards for help, the Sheriff's Office said. The lifeguards were able to reach the people by using a personal watercraft and other rescue equipment. All were brought back to shore and were not injured.

The group was at the state beach park for a family reunion, authorities said.

All of them declined medical treatment, said Dunedin fire Division Chief Bill McElligott.

The waters off Honeymoon Island can be hazardous, McElligott said. "There are rip currents there."

And there's a pretty intense current that runs between Caladesi Island and Honeymoon Island, he said.

He's not sure what type of current the family got caught in on Thursday. The currents frequently change, he said.

In April, an Odessa woman saved four people who got caught in a powerful current at Honeymoon Island before firefighters arrived and saved three more.

In June 2009, three teenage swimmers were rescued by a lifeguard at Honeymoon Island State Park.

And in July 2004, a 55-year-old Lutz man drowned at Honeymoon Island after he saved a child caught in a rip current.

If you get caught in a rip current, McElligott suggests swimming parallel to the beach until you can swim out of the rip, and then back in to shore.

"We don't respond to a lot of calls there," McElligott said. "There are a considerable amount of signs that talk about the rip currents and the park does a good job about making that information available."

Four rescued from powerful current at Honeymoon Island 06/30/11 [Last modified: Thursday, June 30, 2011 7:58pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Car bomb kills 13, injures 24 in Baghdad; Islamic State claims responsibility


    BAGHDAD — A car bomb exploded outside a popular ice cream shop in central Baghdad just after midnight today, killing 13 people and wounding 24, hospital and police officials said.

  2. Leaping shark floors angler in Australia


    In The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway's protagonist battles for three days to pull in his prized catch. For Terry Selwood, it came a little more suddenly.

    A 9-foot shark lies on the deck of a fishing boat at Evans Head, Australia on Sunday. Fisherman Terry Selwood said he was left with a badly bruised and bleeding right arm where the shark struck him with a fin as it landed on him on the deck. [Lance Fountain via AP]
  3. Rays rally twice to beat Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ARLINGTON, Texas — Starting Erasmo Ramirez on Monday after he closed out Sunday's marathon win turned out, despite the Rays' best intentions and rigid insistence, to be a bad idea as he gave up four runs without getting through three innings.

    Erasmo Ramirez, starting a day after closing a 15-inning marathon, struggles against the Rangers and comes out after throwing 43 pitches in 21/3 innings.
  4. Britain investigating missed signals over Manchester bomber


    LONDON — Britain's domestic intelligence agency, MI5, is investigating its response to warnings from the public about the threat posed by Salman Abedi, the suicide bomber who killed 22 people and wounded dozens more in an attack at a crowded Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, last week.

    People gather Monday at St. Ann’s Square in Manchester, England, to view tributes to victims of the suicide bombing that killed 22 on May 22 as a concert by Ariana Grande was concluding.
  5. Trump condemns killing of pair who tried to stop racist rant


    The mayor of Portland, Ore., on Monday urged U.S. officials and organizers to cancel a "Trump Free Speech Rally" and other similar events, saying they are inappropriate and could be dangerous after two men were stabbed to death on a train as they tried to help a pair of young women targeted by an anti-Muslim tirade.

    Coco Douglas, 8, leaves a handmade sign and rocks she painted at a memorial in Portland, Ore., on Saturday for two bystanders who were stabbed to death Friday while trying to stop a man who was yelling anti-Muslim slurs and acting aggressively toward two young women. From left are Coco's brother, Desmond Douglas; her father, Christopher Douglas; and her stepmother, Angel Sauls. [Associated Press]