Two tourists were washed out to sea after being struck by waves while they posed on rocks for selfies – leaving one dead. Amanda Maria Roque, 19, and Leonardo Santos, 25, climbed onto wet rocks during their holiday in Brazil last month.
Relative Jeferson da Conceicao, 19, stood on rocks above the shore after refusing to join them and watched in horror as a giant wave smashed into the pair and took them out into the ocean.
A spokesman for the Laguna Fire Brigade, who investigated the drowning, warned others not to take risky pictures next to the sea. They said: “The teenage girl was rescued but we found the older man on April 19. He had drowned in the sea after being hit by waves.
“Nobody should go close to the sea to take pictures from rocks. The sea on that day was very strong and nobody can predict how it will behave. ”
Lifeguards arrived on a jet ski and dragged Amanda from the sea but Leonardo had already been swept away. The incident occurred in the coastal town Farol de Santa Marta in Brazil.
Tragically, Leonardo’s body was found four days later after the incident on March 15 in the Laguna district, state of Santa Catarina. Amanda told rescuers she tried to hold on to her cousin – who was already unconscious – by his hair, but the power of waves dragged him away.
She said: “We met at the shore near the lighthouse to take some pictures.
“Myself and Leonardo went onto the rocks and were surprised by the force of a wave which took us into the sea. “Me and my cousin were sucked into the water and tried to swim but I realized he was disorientated and drowning.
“I tried to make him react, to keep him awake. But the waves were hitting us a lot and I realized that he has unconscious because he had swallowed so much water.
“I still thought that he could be saved so I held onto his hair for some time. But another wave came and at that point, I could no longer see him and could not save his life.”