A U.S. mother and her son decided to go for a float in their new inflatable swan. But their fun day out quickly turned into a nightmare adventure.

Tara Myers and her son Brennan had taken the beach toy to Anna Maria island and thought the conditions were perfect with no wind and no waves.

But things quickly changed and at one point she thought she and her son could die.

“I have never been more scared in my entire life,” she told WFLA.

At first everything was going well, but Tara soon realized they were in trouble and they had drifted a long way from the beach.

“I was not sure if we were going to keep drifting because land just kept getting farther and farther and farther away,” Tara explained.

She knew she had to do something fast and tried to swim against the current, using her legs to kick and push the swan into a new direction but it didn’t work.

Tara explained it was exhausting and her efforts were barely doing anything to help them.

Thankfully people on the beach did see how far they had drifted and called emergency services.

When Tara saw help coming she couldn’t hold back the tears.

“I literally just laid down on that swan float and cried. So hard because this could have ended so much worse, and I didn’t want him to know that I was that scared,” Tara said.

When they finally made it back onto dry land they burst a hole in the swan, deflated it and threw it into a dumpster.

Tara admitted they won’t be taking a giant inflatable out in open water again and wants her story to be a warning to other parents thinking of doing the same thing once summer picks up.

Authorities have previously warned against these toys.

They might be fun, but they are very dangerous!

Lifeguards say they should never be used as a beach toy and are urging people to leave them for the pool.

Safety first. Leave them at home on your next beach trip.

We recently shared a Mother’s urgent warning after her son nearly drowned using an inflatable pool lounge. Read more on that here.

Share your comments below



  • Why would you even consider taking this to the beach. Not very clever.


  • These toys almost always come with a disclaimer that they should only be used in a pool. And Common sense would tell anyone this too.


  • Wow how scary for them. Could have ended badly. The sea is unpredictable, better these toys left to the pool with calm water.


  • Scary thing to happen but yes, poll toys are exactly that, for the pool. Would have also paid to know how to deal with a rip once you’re in one (swimming parallel to the beach and not against the rip) so she would have been able to navigate them safely.


  • My understanding is that those toys are used only in swimming pools


  • It’s the sea that makes it unpredictable and unsafe, not the toy. The toy used on an unpredictable sea, makes it unsafe.


  • Wow a great reminder for us all


  • How scary and a very timely warning with the weather warming up.


  • I didn’t see a need for these things at a beach

    • We do use items that are made for the ocean and only with supervision.


  • I think not enough people understand or have respect for the ocean and it’s power, When you are floating on something, it is hard to judge how far you have floated and how deep the water is beneath you.


  • I have never taken inflatable toys to the beach.
    Pool with parent supervision only.
    The ocean is far to unpredictable and powerful.


  • oopps sorry should read floating out to SEA.


  • mom81879 what story are you reading ???
    These inflatable toys are for POOLS not the beach…the reason is very simple, the beach has rips and currents and the ocean will drag you out to sea, just like this woman found out. Seriously where are you going to drift to in a pool? Our wonderful life guards risk their own lives many times over trying to keep us safe and rescuing us from peril and they certainly don’t need people on these pool floats , floating out to see. The mom story was quite clear and precise, and so was the lifeguards advice.
    “Lifeguards say they should never be used as a beach toy and are urging people to leave them for the pool.
    Safety first. Leave them at home on your next beach trip.”

    • And people can get dragged out in rips and currents without these floaty toys. It’s all about adequate supervision the beach is a dangerous place so watch your kids diligently


  • Definitely keeping the large inflatables for the pool!


  • It looks quite scary. Luckily that someone called emergency services!!


Post a comment
Like Facebook page

LIKE MoM on Facebook

Please enter your comment below
Would you like to include a photo?
No picture uploaded yet.
Please wait to see your image preview here before hitting the submit button.
Your MoM account

Lost your password?

Enter your email and a password below to post your comment and join MoM:

You May Like


Looks like this may be blocked by you browser or content filtering.

↥ Back to top

Thanks For Your Star Rating!

Would you like to add a written rating or just a star rating?

Write A Rating Just A Star Rating