Search continues for missing swimmers off LI

May 27, 2010 2:24:51 PM PDT
Rescuers on Long Island resumed their search for two missing swimmers who disappeared off the coast of Nassau County Wednesday. Manuel Tiburcio, 19, was swept out to sea off Long Beach. The other, a man in his 20s, vanished into the surf at Jones Beach.

Coast Guard crews exhausted thei 18 hour search just after noon. The missing 22 year old swimmer is now presumed dead.

Last night around 7 p.m., the young man identified as Eugene Theodore waded into the ocean with two friends. They were separated by a large wave.

Tiburcio was swimming with a group of college classmates when he disappeared into the surf. He is also presumed dead, and authorities have switched from rescue to recovery.

Two other friends from the same group were pulled out by lifeguards after getting into trouble.

Thanks to the picture-perfect weather, the beaches were crowded Wednesday. But combine that with dangerous rip tides and no lifeguards, and officials say there's the potential for disaster.

"When you kick in, hypothermia, cold water, accelerated heart rate, quicker exhaustion, it's a recipe for a tragedy," Jones Beach lifeguard Bruce Meirowitz said. "And that's what happened."

Lifeguards will go on duty Saturday, which marks the official start of the season. Meanwhile, beach-goers are urged to stay out of the water until that happens.