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Coroner’s court hears of attempts to rescue Ribble Valley woman
A WOMAN who drowned in Lanzarote in August was the victim of an accidental death, an inquest heard yesterday.
Nikki Bate, 48, from Clitheroe Road, in Barrow, got into difficulty when she went swimming off the shore of Famara Beach on August 15, near the resort of Caleta de Famara on the north side of the island.
Mrs Bate was on a family holiday, staying at a property the couple own on the island. She drowned in front of her three children India, 14, Nathaniel, 12, and Cameron, 10, Giving evidence to Blackburn Coroner’s Court, sitting at Ribble Valley Council offices, her husband Anthony described attempts made by both himself and lifeguards to rescue his wife.
He said: “I did not see my wife enter the water. I saw her 50 to 100 yards out.
“I swam out and got to her very quickly but the conditions were harsh.
“I got Nikki on my back, but I think she must have panicked and she went under again.”
Mr Bate said a lifeguard swam to rescue the couple, but that by then it was too late. He said: “He got us back to shore within a minute or so. I thought because she’s been under such a short time she’d be right as rain.
”The ambulance and police arrived very quickly and I thought ‘there could be a really serious problem here’.”
Shortly afterwards Mr Bate was told by a police officer that his wife had died. Mr Bate said he did not know why she chose to go swimming that day. He said the family had visited the beach before and knew that it was dangerous. He also said nobody else was swimming in the sea that day.
He added that the couple had taken ‘body boards’ to the beach for their sons to use, but had been warned it was too dangerous to swim with them and left them in the car.
He said: “There are permanent red flags, it’s a very, very dangerous beach.”
Recording a verdict of accidental death, Coroner Michael Singleton said: “She was swimming in the sea in the sea, she was overcome by water and despite attempts at rescue she drowned.
”You have my heartfelt sympathy for your terrible, grievous loss, and for the fact I’ve dragged you here.”
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