Tragic warning

A TRAGIC drowning on a stretch of Tweed Coast near the Casuarina Beach development has highlighted the pressing need for roving surf patrols.

Sadly, Sunday's tragedy happened just one week before a meeting between the Casuarina Residents Associations (CRA) and the Salt Surf Life Saving Club.

CRA president Julie Bennett said next week's meeting had been called to look at ways to improve surf and beach safety through patrols.

She said the area where the man drowned had a very high rating in terms of the need for surf lifesavers due to the prevailing conditions.

"The tragedy proves the need to have patrols," Ms Bennett said.

She said the meeting would focus on getting members to sign up for roving patrols along the stretch of beach in front of Casuarina.

"Casuarina is becoming a heavily populated area and Tweed Council needs to remember that when allocating future funding for patrols.

"It is one thing to approve new developments but it is council's responsibility to also ensure that they make the provisions to service them."

The meeting will offer cold comfort for family and friends of the 50-year-old United Kingdom man who had been swimming in the surf at the southern end of Casuarina Beach on Sunday afternoon.

A NSW police media spokesman said the man had been swimming with a relative who became alarmed when the visitor did not return to shore from the surf.

"The man was then seen by the relative lying face down in the water," the spokesman said.

Tweed Police duty officer Sergeant Greg Swindells said nearby surfers brought the man back to shore where an off-duty nurse assisted with CPR.

Ambulance and police offi- cers and Westpac Helicopter emergency services personnel attended the scene where they worked on the man for 40 minutes.

The man was transported to the Tweed Hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.

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