A chaotic scene in the water off Pensacola beach yesterday, as lifeguards searched for a missing swimmer.
Witnesses called law enforcement for help.
“Around 3 o’clock yesterday afternoon, we heard the report of a call of a submerged swimmer, submerged person in the water,” says David Greenwood Pensacola Beach Water Safety Chief.
Dive teams from several agencies in Escambia County searched the gulf waters for hours, trying to find 18-year-old Farano Walker.
“It took about two hours for the lifeguards about two hours in the water of searching to locate the patient,” says Greenwood.
The chief public safety officer says every second counts for rescue and recovery teams.
According to Greenwood every 2-5 minutes is vital for lifeguards trying to rescue victims.
“According to USLA we have a two-minute window, where we get someone who is submerged to successfully resuscitate them,” says Greenwood.
Greenwood says a situation like yesterday is uncommon, the flags were at green status, meaning calm conditions.
But he says swimmers never know about drop offs because of the sand.
“The nice beautiful white cork sand moves around a lot some areas can be shallow, knee-deep you can take a few steps to your right or left, and it can be up to your neck or overhead and you can suddenly submerge,” says Greenwood.
Greenwood says Walker was only about a mile out from the shoreline but warns no matter what people should be more cautious.
“It’s an open body of water, and you have to respect, even on days of green flags you have to use caution,” says Greenwood.