Four family members drown at beach in northern Egypt

CAIRO (AP) — Four members of a family visiting a beach in northern Egypt drowned on Thursday, the police said, the second incident in as many weeks along a rocky coast that has long been a notorious site of drownings.

Rescue crews pulled the bodies of a 19-year-old girl and her 15-year-old brother from the water off the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. Emergency teams were still searching for two missing people, said Mohamed Homs, director of the local ambulance service.

The accident occurred at al-Safa beach just west of the city, a popular place for working-class Egyptian families to camp and seek relief from the stifling summer heat. The beach often attracts those with little or no swimming skills, who wade into the water to cool off but can become swept out to sea or caught in rip currents with tragic results.

The coronavirus pandemic has presented new safety concerns as beaches are closed for swimming across the country and lifeguards are not on duty. Still, after months of quarantine and with many activities canceled because of the pandemic, coastal areas are particularly alluring this summer.

Earlier this month, 11 people drowned at another beach close to al-Safa. Every year the area sees a rash of drownings due to strong currents and rip tides.


Image: In this Aug. 8, 2019, photo, garbage creeps towards the shore at Stanley Beach in Alexandria, Egypt. Authorities say that 11 people drowned off the coast of northern Egypt on Friday, July 10, 2020 at a beach known for its rocky jetty and fast-moving waters. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo, file)

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