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Local teenagers’ heroic effort to save injured dolphin

Liam Santos spent an hour and a half at sea in an attempt to rescue a severely injured dolphin which was swept against rocks at Sandy Bay by a rough tide.

The 17-year-old told the Chronicle he went the beach with a friend last Tuesday when he spotted what he thought was a seagull caught on the groyne at the northern end of Sandy Bay.

Upon closer inspection he noticed it was a dolphin jumped in the water to save it but with each attempt to push the dolphin out of harm’s way, the dolphin would be pushed back unable to swim with the currents.

“The dolphin was bashing against the rocks and both times I tried to push it away it couldn’t swim,” Mr Santos said.

He noticed that one of the dolphin’s fins was damaged and held on to the dolphin in the water for an hour and a half until help arrived.


Mr Santos' friend called the vet who notified the Department of Environment and took over from the teenager.

An environmental officer attended with a wet suit and held onto the dolphin until his colleagues arrived on boat to tend to the injured dolphin.

“It was crazy, I never thought that this would happen,” said Mr Santos.

“The water was freezing and my lips were purple. It was dark and cold.”

He thanked a lady who lived by Sandy Bay and gave him a towel to keep warm when he got out of the water.

Despite Mr Santos efforts he has been informed that the dolphin had to be put to rest as it could not swim properly.

He was assured the dolphin did not suffer a prolonged death as would have been the case had it been released and drowned.

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