By Beth Germano

HAMPTON, N.H. (CBS) – It’s a troubling discovery that at one time was rare on Hampton Beach.

A young girl stepped on a small needle while walking on the popular New Hampshire beach, and needed first aid from a lifeguard.

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“He took it out, administered first aid with hydrogen peroxide and so forth,” said chief of lifeguards Jim Donahue.

The girl’s mother refused an ambulance, but the incident has raised a new level of awareness among lifeguards who are already highly trained in first aid.

“We’re making sure it’s incorporated into their training and they have the resources to expand it into their first aid training,” said regional director Brian Wilson.

A lifeguard at Hampton Beach in New Hampshire. (WBZ-TV)

Since early June four needles have been found on the beach, largely in a northern, more secluded area.

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Officials say they could have even washed in from the ocean. But for beachgoers it raises everyone’s awareness.

“We all have to be on high alert,” said Marie Liberty. “The beach, of course, is someplace everyone likes to come to during the summer.”

And while additional lifeguard training is applauded, some hope it goes even further.

“They should have at their stations some type of box should they find something to secure it,” said Keith Barnes.

Officials say the beaches are trolled for debris every day. Now it’s one more thing to look for.

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“Every year a situation comes up that hasn’t happened to us before.  We work within our scope and we learn from that,” said Wilson.

Beth Germano