Falling Boulder Injures Beach-goer

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A 500-pound boulder that dislodged from a beach bluff seriously injured and trapped a teenager on the south stretch of Emerald Bay Wednesday, July 18.

Lifeguards applied a tourniquet to the 15-year-old boy’s severed right arm and firefighters inflated air bags and applied brute strength to lift the cooler-sized rock off the boy’s leg, said Orange County Fire Authority spokesman Tony Bommarito.

The youth was airlifted by helicopter to UC Irvine Medical Center in serious condition, said Bommarito. He was unable to provide an update Thursday about the medical condition of the youth, who was not further identified.

A friend of the injured boy told rescuers they had walked the same stretch of beach many times. “They were in the wrong place at the wrong time,” said Bommarito, noting though that the presence and actions of lifeguards likely saved the boy’s life.

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