A TEENAGER was pulled from the River Tyne by a passer-by after being carried along by a current.

Shelley Thomson was walking her dog when she saw the boy, aged about 13 or 14, in distress in the area underneath the pedestrian bridge on the Prudhoe side of the river.

“I’m a mum and I just pictured if it was my daughter in that situation”, said the 36-year-old.

“I grew up in the area and I know the river quite well and I knew that once he passed under the pedestrian bridge, the river opens up and the water gets much deeper and the currents are a lot stronger.

“I wouldn’t advocate any member of the public jumping into the river to help someone because you’re putting your own life at risk but I’ve never been in that situation before and it was a kid – they were screaming for help and I was the only person there.

“I knew that if I didn’t help him, within 30 seconds, he’d be carried so far down the river that nobody would have got to him.

“I was just literally in the exact right spot at the right moment. It’s just really frightening to think about what could have happened.”

Coincidentally, National Drowning Prevention Week will be running from this weekend to June 19.

To anybody thinking of swimming in the river, Shelley had a clear message: “Just please don’t! It looks inviting, it looks quite safe but you just don’t know, and when something happens it happens very quickly. To any member of the public, I’d say don’t jump in to help someone if there’s any other options available to you.”

Coun. Waddell for Bywell and Coun. Scott, Prudhoe North, have contacted Northumberland County Council to request new signage in the area and a new lifebelt for the south side of the river. They also said all of the ward’s schools had been contacted to cover riverside safety.