Safety first priority at beaches
THE Australian Lifeguard Service has launched the summer safety campaign, Operation Edge.
More than 350 employed lifeguards will patrol NSW coastlines until the end of January to ensure beach-goers enjoy their summer holidays in safety and to minimise incidents on our beaches.
NSW Chief Lifeguard Stephen Leahy said lifeguard services played an important part in ensuring the NSW coast remained one of Australia’s top summer destinations.
“People know they can go to a beach close to where they are visiting and there will be a lifesaving service there on any day of the summer holidays,” he said.
With thousands of tourists and locals expected to flock to Clarence Valley beaches over the Christmas and New Year period, president of Red Rock-Corindi Surf Life Saving Club Mark Aspinall said it was important people follow basic beach guidelines.
“People swimming at the beach should swim between the flags – or ask a local person from that area if they are unsure – because they generally know the area,” he said.
“Parents should make sure that children are always under adult supervision, and if swimmers are in doubt of the conditions they should talk to a lifeguard on duty,” he said.Summer surf fact:
- 350 lifeguards will be employed over summer to provide safe beaches.
- Last year across NSW, lifeguards rescued 1436 people, warned 183,833 swimmers and board riders they were in dangerous locations, treated 5054 people with first aid, reunited 40 lost children with their parents and closed beaches on 31 occasions due to shark alarms.
- Lifeguards are different from surf lifesavers in that a lifeguard usually works either by themselves or only with one other lifeguard, and is employed, whereas a surf lifesaver is a volunteer who works in a patrol team.
- Most Clarence Valley beaches will be patrolled from 9am-5pm daily, but you should check the hours with the council.