Police were called to the 21st Avenue Beach in the South Seaside Park section of Berkeley Township around 4:35 p.m. When they arrived at the scene, police determined that eight people, including four lifeguards, were injured by the electric shock or by a residual strike. Berkeley Township Police Department.
At least one of the victims at Berkeley Township Lifeguard died of his injuries. This was the ninth death of lightning in the United States and the second in New Jersey this year National Lightning Security Council.
The other victims were taken to a local hospital for treatment, police said.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy wrote on Twitter, “Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the young lifeguard killed in today’s horrific electric shock on a beach in Berkeley Township.” “I have spoken with Mayor Carmen Amato and offered my full support and assistance to our administration during this difficult time.”
On Monday night, a handwritten note in purple ink with flowers was left at the foot of a lifeguard stand on the beach.
“We were at the beach today and thank you for what you did for us by keeping us safe on the beach,” the note said. “We’re sorry for your inconvenience.”
Berkeley Township Mayor Carmen Amato called the incident “a sad and heartbreaking day for our city and the entire Jersey coast.”
“This young man was protecting the lives of others every day,” Amato said in a statement. “Our lifeguard team, like many on shore, has developed a special relationship with our community throughout the summer, adding to this loss.”
Berkeley Township beaches will be closed for swimming Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, as beach crews and lifeguards will be closed, police said.
The incident is under investigation.
South Beach Park is about 60 miles south of New York City.
The Associated Press contributed to this report