Wiped out in the flags: surfers ‘ignoring’ beach’s sacred rule RECOVERING: Newcastle surf club member Rod Morris was rushed to hospital with a deep gash to his head after being struck by a surfboard in the flags. Picture: Jonathan Carroll
OUCH: The surfboard fin cut to the bone. Picture: Supplied
Rod Morris in hospital recovering from his injuries. Picture: Supplied
A surgeon peels back the skin before Rod Morris went into surgery. Picture: Supplied
Rod Morris returns to the beach after he was struck by a surfboard. Picture: Supplied
TweetFacebookMr Morris, who is a nurse, said he was pleased with his recovery but doctors hadn’t ruled out plastic surgery. He received about 30 stitches.
“It will leave a scar, I know that,” he said. “I can’t do anything about it, but other than highlight it. I don’t want it to happen to anyone else. As bad as it was, it could have been much worse,” he said.
“I hate to think what would happen to a kid or elderly person.”
‘I hate to think what would happen to a kid or elderly person’: Rod Morris. Picture: Jonathan Carrol
Surf club instructor Lee Howes said keeping boardriders out of the flags was an ongoing problem on the sand.
She said some surfers were refusing to bow out of a wave as it approached the flags.
“The majority are great and they understand the flags are a sacred area,” she said.
“But there’s a select few who just think they can surf wherever they want. There’s times where they just ignore you …you’re pretty powerless to do anything about it.”
Ms Howes urged all beachgoers to respect the rules.
“If it had been a young kid, it could have been fatal,” she said. “This is an accident that shouldn’t have happened.”
Mr Morris said the surfer tried to get in touch, but he was not ready to speak.
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