iocat (572367) writes "Just in time for summer comes a new threat at the beach... the beach itself. According to a story on CNN , which sites an article in the New England Journal of Medicine, sand holes have killed more Americans (16) than shark attacks (12) in the period from 1990 — 2006. They can quickly collapse and crush or suffocate victims.
According to the article, one victim was " Matthew Gauruder, who died from a collapse at an after-prom beach party in Westerly, Rhode Island, in May 2001. The 17-year-old was playing football with friends when he jumped for a pass and fell backward into an eight-foot-deep hole someone had dug earlier. Would-be rescuers made the problem worse by caving in more sand as they tried to approach him. People at the scene said he may have been buried 15 minutes, said his mother, Mavis. "
A crusading father and son duo of doctors has pursued the issue for years, after the son witnessed a dangerous collapse while working a summer job as a life-guard on Martha's Vineyard. Apparently life-guards on the Vineyard are now instructed to kick people out of holes deeper than a child's waist."
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