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Boy buried under beach sand prompts lifeguards to issue warning about digging holes

An incident at Newport Beach earlier this month, in which a boy was buried under sand by a friend, has prompted lifeguards to issue a warning to beach-goers not to dig large holes.

A lifeguard discovered that two boys had dug a tunnel that was 8 to 10 feet long and about 2 1/2 feet in circumference, built at about a 25-degree downward angle.

"The second boy was halfway into the tunnel covered up to his face," a lifeguard memo on the incident states. "All that could be seen was the back of his head, and he was face down."

Lifeguard Capt. Josh van Egmond called for backup units and began removing sand cautiously, trying to avoid a collapse of the tunnel. Nevertheless, the sand did collapse around the child. Van Egmond began digging and found the heel of the boy, then a foot, and was able to remove the child.

"This was a really close call," Lifeguard Battalion Chief Jim Turner said.

Read the full story here.

-- Amy Senk, Daily Pilot / Times Community News

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