High school swimmers rescued off La Jolla
LA JOLLA — San Diego lifeguards rescued 20 Moreno Valley-area high school swim team members from the ocean off La Jolla Tuesday when they had trouble making a long-distance swim.
One student was taken to a hospital and was expected to be released, and paramedics treated at least seven others who swallowed too much water or became chilled.
The mass rescue involved 62 swimmers from Rancho Verde High School in Moreno Valley
Lifeguards had given an ocean safety talk to the students and coaches before they set out from La Jolla Cove to swim toward a buoy a half-mile out into the ocean, lifeguard Lt. John Sandmeyer said.
As the dozens of swimmers set off, some ran into difficulties because of the gusting winds and choppy surf. Some drifted north and were rescued close to La Jolla Shores about 1 p.m. The water was about 59 degrees, and the waves were about 2 to 4 feet tall, and winds gusted from 11.5 to 17 mph, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesman Lee Swanson said.
Lifeguards helped 20 students back to the beach between the Cove and the Shores and additional swimmers straggled to shore wherever they could. They were gathered at Kellogg Park and all were accounted for, Swanson said.
He said most of the swimmers were fine, and were showering on the beach before joining the others.
Lifeguards coordinated with coaches who had a list of all the students as they confirmed that each swimmer was safe.