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2 Boys Pulled From Riptide on Field Trip

Two Fillmore Middle School students on a field trip at San Buenaventura State Beach in Ventura had to be rescued Monday after a riptide pulled the boys more than 200 feet from shore, state lifeguards said.

A third boy pulled out to sea in the 10 a.m. incident was able to swim in on his own, said David Ford, a lifeguard who was on duty at the beach’s nearby headquarters.

No one was injured, lifeguards said.

“They weren’t panicked at all. They were just stuck in a rip and it was pulling them out and they weren’t making any progress,” Ford said.

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At the time of the incident, the area was not marked with orange buoys usually placed onshore to warn swimmers of riptides, Ford said. The incident occurred as lifeguards were starting their shifts.

The site was posted off-limits for the rest of the day, he said.

The boys were in a group of 123 seventh- and eighth-graders who had earned the trip for having perfect dress-code marks in daily physical education classes, said Marsha Porter, the school’s vice principal.

Porter, who said students were advised of heavy surf and safety issues before leaving campus, also lauded the boys for staying calm.

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“You never know when something is going to happen, but we try to make sure they are prepared. They were advised to swim near the tower and with someone else,” she said.

The boys had been body-boarding between the Ventura Pier and San Pedro Street when the riptide crept in, witnesses said. Lifeguard Raul Escobar swam out with a rescue buoy and helped the boys ashore.


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