GAP SELF­IES ANGER RES­CUERS

More pho­tos of vis­i­tors risk­ing their lives emerge de­spite a re­cent death at the pop­u­lar tourist spot.

Albany Extra - - Front Page - Shan­non Smith

Pho­tos cap­tur­ing peo­ple near­ing the edge of The Gap and Nat­u­ral Bridge are haunt­ing emer­gency ser­vice re­spon­ders.

Al­bany Sea Res­cue Squad’s Chris Johns has lost count of the bod­ies he has pulled from the wa­ter.

When shown these pho­tos, Mr Johns said peo­ple needed to re­alise should some­thing go wrong, many oth­ers were put at risk in the af­ter­math.

“If he fell off the Nat­u­ral Bridge, that would be SES most likely to re­spond, and can you imag­ine just how dan­ger­ous it would be for re­spon­ders to re­trieve his body if he fell down the Gap?” he said of a photo posted on so­cial me­dia.

“My first thought is ‘God, how would we get him out of there with swells com­ing in?’.

“He has no idea who he is plac­ing in peril.

“I have some crew that are very raw af­ter the last two deaths.”

Mr Johns and his crew re­trieved res­i­dent Sa­muel Roth and a 20year-old In­dian stu­dent, known as Ankit, from the wa­ter in two sep­a­rate coast­line fa­tal­i­ties this year.

Mr Roth had been rock fish­ing at Low­lands, while Ankit was tak­ing a photo while run­ning and jump­ing on the rocks near the Gap edge when he fell to his death.

Mr Johns said he was frus­trated and sick of peo­ple think­ing they were bul­let­proof.

“I am the one who de­ploys our boats, of­ten driv­ing them, and in­volves our crews,” he said.

“There is a lot of grav­ity around that.

“But if I say that he is a tool, how does that make me look?

“But I do think that he is a tool be­cause he is putting my crews at risk and af­fect­ing their lives too.”

He has no idea who he is plac­ing in peril . . . I have some crew that are very raw af­ter the last two deaths. Chris Johns

This photo was posted on In­sta­gram this week.

Pic­ture: Lau­rie Ben­son

FLASH­BACK: Emer­gency ser­vices keep an eye on the body of 20-year-old In­dian stu­dent Ankit, who fell from The Gap in May.

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