Sunnah Khan, 12, drowned while swimming near the pier on Bournemouth beach (Pictures: PA)
It took lifeguards just under an hour to find a 12-year-old girl who drowned in the sea, an inquest has heard.
Sunnah Khan had been swimming near the pier on Bournemouth beach on May 31, when things went wrong and she died alongside 17-year-old Joe Abbess.
Investigations have been ordered to find out what exactly led to their deaths.
CCTV showed young people struggling in the water at 3.45pm, a pre-inquest hearing at Bournemouth Town Hall was told yesterday.
A lifeguard arrived seven minutes later and Joe was pulled out at 4.18pm, with Sunnah only being found at 4.45pm.
They were both taken to hospital for medical treatment but the pair ended up losing their lives.
When the inquests opened in June, the Dorset Coroner’s Court was told there was a suggestion the pair drowned in a riptide.
It is believed the 12-year-old was dragged out to sea by a riptide (Picture: PA)
Joe Abbess,17, was swimming with others near the pier when he drowned Picture: PA)
Senior coroner Rachael Griffin said she wanted to focus on what caused this riptide, which was thought to have dragged Sunnah and Joe out to sea.
A pleasure cruiser called the Dorset Belle, which was taking passengers from the pier at the time, is currently being investigated.
It was previously cleared of any involvement by the police, who seized it after the drownings.
The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) also announced no boat was involved and decided not to carry out a full inquiry after a ‘thorough preliminary assessment’.
But Mrs Griffin said she could not rule out the possibility that the boat’s movements played a role in the deaths.
Both youngsters were taken to hospital by emergency workers (Picture: PA)
She explained: ‘Because I do not know what caused the rip current and I know the report by the police refers to possibilities and therefore it is likely I will be seeking an expert opinion on the meteorology so the weather conditions and tidal movement and then factor in the boat.
‘It is still too early for me to rule out the movement of the boat (had an impact).’
Mrs Griffin plans to speak to the MAIB and Maritime and Coastguard Agency for further information on their investigation.
The full inquest conclusion will be revealed early next year.
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