Warnings come as heatwave expected to return
AUTHORITIES have issued multiple warnings as a heatwave is expected to hit the area this weekend.
The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast a top temperature of 35C for today, but predicts that the mercury will teach 40C on Sunday.
They say it will be mostly sunny day with chance of a thunderstorm in the south at night. Winds north to north-westerly 20 to 30 km/h becoming light in the late evening, prompting a marine wind warning for the area.
With the heat expected to coming, surf lifesavers are preparing for a busy weekend on the coast as thousands of people head to the beach to cool off.
“After relatively cool spring weather, this weekend is set to be the busiest we’ve had on our beaches for some time as we head into summer and temperatures soar,” said Director of Lifesaving at Surf Life Saving NSW Joel Wiseman.
“With temperatures forecast to push into the 40s across the weekend, people are already making plans to head to the beach to avoid higher inland temperatures.
“Our strong message to beachgoers as we head into the weekend is to plan ahead and pick a beach that is patrolled by volunteer surf lifesavers or lifeguards and to always swim between the red and yellow flags.
“Last week’s drowning tragedy at Woonona Beach near Wollongong is a sad reminder to everyone of the importance of swimming at patrolled beaches, during patrol hours.
“The easiest way to check which beaches are patrolled, and the hours surf lifesavers and lifeguards are patrolling, is to use the Beachsafe website or app.
“At the end of a great day on the beach, we want everyone to go home to their families. Swimming between the flags is the simplest step you can take to ensuring that happens.”
He said that rock fishers and boaters are also being reminded to wear life jackets when fishing from sea-exposed rock platforms and while out on the water this weekend.
“Tragically, last year we saw a record number of boating-related coastal drowning deaths. For the first time ever, boating-related fatalities overtook swimming as the activity associated with the most coastal drownings,” Mr Wiseman said.
“The statistics show that when it comes to coastal incidents, life jackets save lives. So, if you’re planning to go rock fishing or boating, plan to drop into your local outdoor adventure store and pick up a correctly fitting lifejacket on the way. You never know, it might just save your life.”
The Beachsafe app can be downloaded via the Beachsafe website at beachsafe.org.au.
There have been 15 coastal and ocean drowning deaths since 1 July 2020. During the 2019/20 season there were a total of 49 coastal and ocean drowning deaths on the NSW coastline. This is higher than the 16-year average of 42.
Clarence Valley Council advised residents to prepare for the heatwave, and stay hydrated.
Their list of recommendations to prepare for a heatwave include:
- Stay hydrated
- Dress light
- Check on family, friends and neighbours
- Stay out of the sun
- Get your home ready
- Seek airconditioning
- Look after your pets
- Don‘t leave children or pets in parked vehicles
- If you or those close to you are suffering heat stress, call for help immediately