Devon swimmer saved from drowning by his Croc shoe


Devon swimmer saved from drowning by his Croc shoe

A Sidmouth swimmer has told how he almost drowned after becoming tangled in a 20ft fishing line - and his Croc shoe saved him from being seriously injured.

Lawrence King, 66, told the Sidmouth Herald that he felt something wrap around his ankles when he was swimming in the sea.

He said: "I was happily bathing up to shoulder height. It's not unusual, especially in Sidmouth, to feel a bit of seaweed around your ankles. That is what I thought it was. Then I felt something around my left ankle and the nearer I got to the beach, the shorter my stride became."

He added: "I was snared."

Mr King had become tangled in the fishing line, which has around eight sharp hooks - one of which became embedded in the sole of his shoe. The line became tighter with every step he made towards shore, and he needed help from onlooker, Gwendoline Odeluga, to untangle him.

Mr King told the Sidmouth Herald: "I wear Crocs and there was a huge hook embedded in the sole of my left foot. The barbs on those hooks are not meant to come out. If I hadn't had my plastic Crocs on I would have been taken to hospital."

The type fishing line, which is usually used to catch mackerel, is often seen on the beach. As a result of the incident, Mr King is now worried about going back into the water and has warned others to be cautious.

He said: "There is plenty of fishing line on the beach. When you are out of your depth in the water, you don't know what's under there. I was lucky."

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