Woman aged 31 dies following Camber Sands bathing tragedy

A Thirty one year old London woman who got into difficulties while bathing in the sea at Camber has died in hospital despite valiant efforts to save her by Coastal Patrol Officer Rob Cass and the beach team.

Tanzeela Ajmal of Tisbury Road, Norbury, was in a group of four people who were on the beach on the afternoon of Saturday July 28 .

Emergency services were called around 4.40pm and paramedics were joined by police and members of Rother District Council’s Coastal Control Officer’s beach patrol in treating the group.

Mrs Ajmal was taken to the Royal Sussex County Hospital at Brighton, where she died last Wednesday night.

Three others, also from the Croydon area, were taken to the Conquest Hospital at Hastings, two of them in a critical condition with suspected lung problems from water ingestion and hypothermia. However, they recovered and were discharged from hospital on Sunday.

PCSO Dan Bevan, who was on duty on the beach as part of the joint Sussex Police/Rother DC Operation Radcott, which runs on busy days throughout the summer, said: “This is desperately sad news. We were in the Coastal Control Office when the alarm was raised and a team was with Tanzeela in less than a minute. Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this time.”

London based Pastor Phil Robinson, who knew Tanzeela, said that, to his knowledge, it was the first time Tanzeela had ever been in the sea.

He said: “She was the member of a church community who were on a day trip to the beach.

“This was the first time this woman had ever been in the sea. The group she was with went in fully clothed. They were not used to it. I think they waded out too far.”

Coastguards had said that the bathers were in thigh deep water and that the sea was calm at the time and bathing conditions were deemed to be safe.

A Rother Council spokesman said; “Officers from the Coastal Control team and police were on the scene within moments to administer first aid and to keep the woman alive until the air ambulance arrived.

“Public safety at Camber Sands is dealt with by Sussex Police and Rother District Council.

“The agencies deal with approximately 15,000 people per day at peak times during the summer months.”