Girl, 15, buried digging hole on Caister-on-Sea beach

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Media captionAndy Hewitt, Caister Lifeboat Rescue: "We thought she was actually dead"

A teenager has been airlifted to hospital after being buried under sand while digging a 7ft hole on a beach.

Norfolk Fire Service crews were called at about 15:15 BST to Beach Road, Caister-on-Sea, to reports of a girl, aged 15, who was trapped under sand.

Rescuers said she was completely immersed by the sand and was in the hole for at least 10 minutes.

The girl, from Kent, was taken to hospital in Gorleston. Her injuries are not thought to be life threatening.

Police said the girl was "conscious and alert" and in shock when she was taken by the helicopter to the James Paget Hospital.

Paul Williams, coxswain of Caister Lifeboat, who lives 50 yards away from where the girl was buried, said he and three other people had helped dig her out with shovels.

'Blue in face'

He said the girl's rescuers had caught her hair as they were digging and lifted her head up then dug around her.

Mr Williams said the girl had been "blue in the face" when they reached her and she started choking. He said she would have been buried for at least 10 minutes.

Paramedics got her on a stretcher and put her on an RAF Search and Rescue helicopter, which was in the area exercising with Lowestoft Lifeboat.

Dave Greggs, duty operations manager from the East of England Ambulance Services, said paramedic Mark Little and a rapid response vehicle had been on the scene within five minutes of the call.

He cleared the girl's airway which potentially saved her life.

She was in suspected respiratory arrest. But Mr Little managed to stabilise her and accompanied her to the hospital.

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