Police refuse to rescue drowning woman.

Posted: May 12, 2010 in Law & Disorder

Three students jumped into a river to save a drowning woman after police refused to rescue her as it was not their ‘responsibility’.

Police were at the scene, but said it was up to the Fire and Rescue Service to save the 37-year-old. Instead, officers held back the crowd from the edge of the River Clyde’s bank – lifebelts were being thrown into the water, but they were out of the woman’s reach.
Graham McGrath, Rosie Lucey and Reece Black, who were walking along the Clyde towards Glasgow Green, jumped into the river near Albert Bridge after it became apparent the officers were not going to.

After dragging the unconscious woman to the bank, Miss Lucey carried out CPR on the victim, whose lips were blue. They were told the woman was close to death and that they had saved her life.

Mr McGrath said: ‘There was a woman in the water shouting for help. There was somebody throwing lifebelts to her, but she couldn’t get to them. ‘The police were holding people back from the edge of the bridge. It became apparent nobody was doing anything else. She was getting lower and lower in the water.’ Miss Lucey said: ‘We realised we were watching someone drown.’

Mr McGrath and Miss Lucey jumped in and pulled her to the bank. Mr Black then waded in and dragged all three ashore.

The trio, who are all first-year students at Glasgow University, yesterday recalled the rescue, which happened at around 1.30pm on Saturday.

Mr Black said: ‘She was gone. She’d been under the water for two minutes. Her lips were blue and her tongue was white. She was frothing at the mouth. ‘We couldn’t find a pulse anywhere but we kept on going. She eventually started gurgling and a lot of water came out her mouth. ‘I’m still shaken up. We were told she would have almost definitely died but we gave her a 50/50 chance.’

A police spokesman said: ‘A 37-year old woman jumped into the Clyde and was rescued by a member of the public prior to the arrival of the emergency services. ‘As a matter of procedure it’s not the responsibility of the police to go in the water, it’s the Fire and Rescue service.’

  1. Howard Thomas says:

    This story sounds like a rerun of the case, somewhere near Manchester,I think, where PCSOs refused to jump into a lake to attempt to save a missing person.
    Apparantly its not mandatory for the police/PCSOs to be able to swim these days. ‘health and safety’ manuels are though, particularly when its their own safety!

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