TRPD: Sand Hole Death Prompts Beach Safety Warning

Officials are urging beachgoers to be cautious and understand the dangers of the beach following the death of an 18 year-old man yesterday after he was buried in a sand hole collapse on the barrier island.

Investigators said Levy Caverly, 18, of Maine, became trapped in the collapse of a hole on the beach that the man was digging with his 17 year-old sister.  The accident happened at the entrance of the beach near Seaview Road known as Ocean Beach III.  His sister was rescued and treated at the scene.

“It was an amazing effort by all of our first responders and bystanders to try and rescue these children.  Although our outcome was not what we had hoped for, we had great success in the rescue of one occupant,” said Chief Drew Calvo, Ocean Beach Volunteer Fire Company. “The Ocean Beach Volunteer Fire Company and all of our first responders offer our deepest condolences to the victim’s family and loved ones.”

Chief Calvo credits the quick response, and the effort and teamwork from the following agencies:

East Dover Fire Company
Ocean Beach Fire Company
Seaside Heights Fire Department
Seaside Heights Public Works Department
Silverton EMS
Hackensack Paramedics
Lavallette Fire Department
Lavallette Police Department
Lavallette Public Works
Ocean County Prosecutors Office
Ocean County Sheriff’s Office
Toms River Police Department and Detective Bureau
Toms River Technical Rescue Team

Chief Calvo said the accident serves as a reminder for parents to take a moment to talk to their children before they get to the beach about safety.

“When digging a sand hole, to be safe only dig one ankle or knee deep, so that if the sand collapses, you can easily escape.”He said digging deep holes could pose a danger to not only other beach visitors but also fire officials and emergency medical services who frequently ride along the beaches during the day.  We want to make sure this does not happen to someone else.

It is also an important reminder to both residents and visitors that lifeguards will not be on duty until Memorial Day weekend and then only weekends until mid-June.

“We want everyone to be safe and have an enjoyable summer at our beaches.”

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