Distracted Facebook fan falls off pier

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Associated Press

The eThekwini Municipality this week splurged half a million rand on a contract to promote Durban on social media, despite having its own bloated communications team with nearly 50 employees. File picture: Karly Domb Sadof

Sydney - A tourist in Australia had to be rescued by police after plunging off a pier while browsing Facebook on her phone, officials said on Wednesday.

The woman was walking along a bay in Melbourne on Monday night when she became distracted by her Facebook feed and plummeted off the pier into the chilly water, Victoria state police said.

A witness called for help and police rushed to the woman's aid. They found her flailing around in the water, about 20m from the pier.

“She was still out in the water lying on her back in a floating position because she told us later that she couldn't swim,” Senior Constable Dean Kelly of the state water police told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

“She still had her mobile phone in her hand and initially she apologised and said sorry.”

The woman was taken to a hospital for treatment. Police said she is a foreigner, but declined to say from which country.

“With Facebook, or social media in general as far as we're concerned, if you're anywhere near the water just pay attention,” Kelly said. “Especially if you can't swim.” - Sapa-AP


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