There was a full scale emergency in Cardiff Bay tonight (Saturday October 15th) following reports that a 20-year-old woman was attempting to swim from Penarth to Cardiff – across Cardiff Bay after dark.
A National Police Air Service helicopter using a NightSun spotlight and heat-seeking equipment circled the area. Once its crew had sighted the women they kept the powerful spotlight trained on the casualty and threw a lifebuoy to her .
A PDN eyewitness, who watched the incident unfold from Penarth Heights, says that the casualty was initially picked up out of the water by a local yacht.
However Penarth Coastguard says the woman was found “clinging to moored yacht Cardiff Bay” and was pulled out of the water by the crew of the South Wales Fire and Rescue Fireboat which is based on the Penarth side of the barrage. The boat had been launched to go to her aid and is crewed by Penarth fire-fighters.
An NHS ambulance, police cars and a mobile incident unit arrived at John Batchelor Way in Penarth Marina – ( the road which follows the southern bank of the River Ely opposite Cardiff Bay Yacht Club’s slipway) .
There is a set of steps, set into the embankment of the River Ely, which lead down the water at this point.
The casualty was landed at John Batchelor Way where she received immediate medical attention by NHS ambulance paramedics before being taken to hospital .
Who raised the alarm has yet to be established but a number of spectators on Cardiff Barrage and in the Marina area witnessed the entire emergency and were relieved to find the woman had been rescued and was safe.
The fire-crew dealing with this incident are understood to be the same firefighters’ watch which dealt with yesterday’s fire at the Clive Arms pub in John St, Penarth.