GLOUCESTER, Mass. - A 13-year-old boy was hospitalized after being struck by an umbrella at Good Harbor Beach in Gloucester on Friday afternoon, Gloucester Fire confirmed to Boston 25 News.
Officials responded to the scene around 1:40 p.m. after reports that the umbrella had become dislodged and then airborne before striking the victim in the left shoulder.
The boy was visiting from Florida and is now recovering at Beverly Hospital. Thankfully he will be okay, but witnesses say he was lucky help was already on the beach.
"We were all just chilling on the beach and then all of a sudden you just saw this umbrella, it just flew in the air," said Stephanie Peters of Cambridge.
A crowd at Good Harbor Beach watched in horror as the umbrella flew into a group of people.
"Went up in the air and hit a couple of ladies in the head and came down and impaled a poor boy right in the armpit and there was blood everywhere," said Laura Wood of Rawley.
"You heard a bunch of people scream and then it was just all kinds of commotion on the beach," Peters said. "And we realized there was this kid on the ground and there was all kinds of blood."
Gloucester firefighters say the umbrella impaled the left shoulder of the 13-year-old.
"All I heard was a woman scream and then the umbrella went flying and then he was on the ground lying down," said Brandon Phillips of Sturbridge. "And then his mom was like, 'Get the lifeguard, get the lifeguard,' so everyone was freaking out."
An EMT and a nurse who were already on the beach rushed to help along with lifeguards. Other people also did what they could.
"Everyone kind of jumped out and we all cleared a path because it was a mob with all the umbrellas and people and chairs and everything," Wood said.
Firefighters say the boy was alert and talking as he was taken to Beverly Hospital.
"To my best guess it was a freak accident," said Captain Nick Ouellette of Gloucester Fire.
But umbrellas can be dangerous if not secured, and the accident serves as a reminder.
"If there's any lesson to be learned [it's] that people have to get those anchors," Peters said. "That's the only thing, get those plastic anchor things and it's not going to blow away, but if you just stick in the sand that's what's going to happen."
Although the boy’s injury was considered serious, he is expected to recover.
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