An unnamed British woman, 33-years-old, and an unnamed British man, 34-years-old, drowned off the coast of southern Portugal. The woman was caught in rough waters and her friend had tried to rescue her. Both victims were brought back to shore by a group of surfers. Medical responders were unable to revive the duo and pronounced them dead. It was later discovered that the woman was four months pregnant.
Zambujeira do Mar on Portugal's Alentejo region is on the south-west coast of the country. The beaches are an attraction for surfers due to a rip-current which prevails on the left side of the beach. The rip currents, which allow expert surfers to enjoy some good waves, are dangerous to inexperienced surfers and swimmers.
Since September 15, the beach that was the site of the tragedy, did not have any lifeguards. The waters on October 6 were choppy. Maritime Police Chief Rui Pedro Silva Filipe shared information regarding the incident with the press. He confirmed the nationality of the duo and said that they were a part of a group of friends who had gone to Portugal for a holiday.
Filipe pointed out that the woman might have been struggling to swim in the rough waters so her friend swam out to help her. While the two were swimming back to shore, they suddenly disappeared. Surfers in the area searched for them and pulled them to a sandbank off the shore. Both of them had suffered cardiac arrest, hence neither the surfers nor the emergency rescue team was able to resuscitate them.
The bodies were taken to a local health care centre where they were confirmed to be dead. Police are awaiting an autopsy report from Beja, where the bodies have been sent.
The Daily Mail reported that the two were initially thought to be a couple, but later it was announced that the two victims were friends who had come from the United Kingdom for a holiday.