A MOTHER of four drowned Friday afternoon at Farnborough Beach, about 20kms north of Yeppoon.
A police spokesman said the 42-year-old Rockhampton region woman's children, all under 14 years, were playing in very shallow water.
Emergency services reported the woman went into the water to rescue one or more of her children who had been dragged out in the current into deeper waters.
"Other children managed to flag down the passerbys - four men in their 20s," the police spokesman said.
"They've rescued two children."
Emergency services were called about 1.30pm.
Both Queensland Ambulance Service and the RACQ Capricorn Rescue Helicopter responded.
"The emergency medical dispatcher relayed CPR instructions and when the paramedics arrived, they continued CPR," a department of Community Safety spokeswoman said.
In a statement issued by the rescue helicopter service, it said the woman was pulled from the water by a family friend and the men who had stopped to help.
The woman was pronounced dead at the scene about 3pm.
Yeppoon police are investigating.