Sure, we all love a good beach day in the summer. But your day of relaxation can quickly turn frenzied if the conditions aren’t just right—say, the tide’s too high or there are sharks just a wee big close for comfort.
But one of the worst conditions for the beach? We’d say it’s wind. And one teenage boy will probably never go back to a windy beach after what just recently happened to him.
The 13-year-old, who remains unnamed, was enjoying his vacation with his family at Good Harbor Beach in Massachusetts when someone else’s beach umbrella came barreling right at him in the windy air. The umbrella hit him in the shoulder. Hard.
“I was sitting right here, and a little gust of wind came up, and the umbrella popped straight up in the air,” said one witness Chris Carson. “Before anybody could grab it, it just kind of rolled over, and the kid was standing in the way on the beach. He couldn’t get out of the way.”
The teen suffered a gaping hole to the shoulder and was “bleeding profusely,” according to witnesses. People around him attempted to help him as much as they could before emergency responders stepped in to transfer him to a local hospital.
Thankfully, his injuries are not fatal and he’s expected to make a full recovery—though we can’t imagine he’ll be going to the beach any time soon.
Experts say it’s important to be extra careful when using umbrellas at the beach—e.g., avoid the cheap, flimsy ones that are most likely to fly across the sand and injure an innocent beachgoer.
It’s also important to make sure that you wedge the umbrella deep into the same when using it—at least 16 inches, advises Santa Monica Lifeguard Captain Julio Rodriguez.
“You can either use a shovel to dig the hole deep enough to set the stake and pack it in, or once you drive the stake into the sand, rock it back and forth,” he says. “That typically gets it in deeper into the sand.”
To hear more about the incident, watch the video below.
Have you ever gotten pelted by a beach umbrella gone lose? What do you do to prevent beach injuries from occurring?