Guam Fire Department rescue vehicles are situated beside Hotel Santa Fe Guam during a search for a missing swimmer in Tamuning on Friday.

Guam Fire Department rescue vehicles are situated beside Hotel Santa Fe Guam during a search for a missing swimmer in Tamuning on Friday. 

HAGÅTÑA (The Guam Daily Post) — The Guam Fire Department is currently searching for two swimmers who were swept out by strong waves at different points during the passage of Typhoon Mawar.

On Friday afternoon, GFD spokesperson Kevin Reilly announced units were searching for two missing people at two separate locations following reports that they went missing while in the water. Another person was reported to be lifeless and pulseless while being transported to an area hospital.

The first ongoing rescue, which began at 10 a.m. Thursday stems from reports that an 18-year-old and another adult male went swimming toward Alupang Island on Wednesday at around 2 p.m. They reportedly got swept out to sea by large waves north of the island by Rick's Reef, Reilly stated in a message to local media.

"According to the man, he tried, but was unable to pull the other swimmer from the rough waters approximately 30 yards from the island. With the weather deteriorating rapidly, the man decided to remain on the island through the duration of Typhoon Mawar," Reilly said.

The 18-year-old wasn't able to return to shore  until Thursday to report the incident, and units were dispatched to conduct shoreline and reef line searches today.

At first light Friday, the search continued, Reilly added.

Six swimmers

The second search also started on Thursday at 5:20 p.m. when units responded to the Hågat Marina channel for six distressed swimmers who were all males ranging in ages from 16 to 19-years-old.

Reilly explained the teens were swept out of the marina by strong currents, and three were able to make it back to shore.

"The fourth was (brought) back to shore by rescue personnel. However, the fifth male was retrieved outside the reef line, pulseless and breathless," according to Reilly, who added CPR was conducted on the victim at the scene and during transport to the hospital.

"The sixth distressed swimmer in the group is still unaccounted for," Reilly added, stating HSC-25 helicopters joined the search for the missing teen, which continued on Friday.


Both GFD and the Guam Environmental Protection Agency urged the community to stay out of all the island's 43 beaches for several reasons.

"The Guam Fire Department urges the community to please postpone all water related activities until the weather and seas are more favorable," Reilly stated.

Guam EPA issued a special beach advisory because of the large amount of rain received from Typhoon Mawar.

"Stormwater runoff, pooled water, or areas of flooding may contain high concentrations of unsafe bacteria," stated a release from the Joint Information Center.

"Recreational activities at unsafe beaches may result in minor illnesses such as sore throats or diarrhea. Activities might also result in more serious illnesses such as meningitis, encephalitis, or severe gastroenteritis. Children, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems have a greater chance of getting sick when they come in contact with contaminated water," the JIC release added.

comments powered by Disqus