King tides sweeping in
THE Clarence Valley is bucking the trend after a number of drownings on the east coast of NSW.
With zero rescues so far on the seven patrolled beaches along our coastline, Clarence Valley lifeguard coordinator Greg Wylie is hoping to keep the good record going with huge tide predicted over the new year's period.
Tides are expect to go beyond two metres, with the New Year's Day high tide mark expected to hit 1.96m.
"The peak of the tide is pretty well on the time we start in the morning and the tide hangs around for the better part of the day," he said.
The busiest time on Clarence Valley beaches is between 10am to 12pm, when the extreme high tides will be at their peak.
On January 3, the tide will hit a whopping 2.7m, at about 10am.
According to Mr Wylie, this means lifeguards will be extra vigilant, but he also urges people to swim between the flags.
"Big tides draw people out to sea," he said. "If we get larger waves or backwash with these tides, lifeguards meed to be on their game.
"If people get caught in the tide going out, they need to tread water, not panic, and wave one of their arms around. The lifeguards will go and get them."
Mr Wylie said he's been very pleased with beachgoers this season.
"It's very good to see boardriders staying out of the flags, but we have had some trouble with that on Turners Beach in Yamba," he said.
"I'm very happy with the performance of the tourists, locals and Mother Nature has given us some beautiful weather.
"There has been no call for an ambulance with only minor first-aid needed.
"It's been an ideal finish to 2017 and we're geared up for a good 2018. Knowing what's been going on with drownings outside our region, it's good to know things are going well."