Shoalhaven Lifeguards Put Through Their Paces

Lifeguards from across the Shoalhaven region gathered at Mollymook SLSC on Saturday for their annual proficiency test ahead of patrols commencing today in the region.

The 40 lifeguards were put through a range of drills throughout the day as they put their knowledge and skills to the test ahead of the start of summer.

Attending the session was a veritable who’s who of emergency services in the Shoalhaven region as representatives from ambulance, fire, police, and the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter all came to participate in a question and answer session with the lifeguards.

Phil Dunn, Southern Coordinator for the Australian Lifeguard Service praised the professionalism of the lifeguards who attended the proficiency day, and said it’s an excellent way to prepare for the summer season.

“The day was an opportunity for our lifeguards to refresh their skills and prepare for what promises to be a busy summer.

“We pride ourselves on our high quality training, and see these type of sessions as an opportunity for our lifeguards to familiarise themselves with the local environment before it gets too busy,” Phil Dunn said.

“The South Coast is home to some beautiful beaches, and is a very popular tourist destination over the summer holiday period. We have a very positive relationship with Shoalhaven City Council, and look forward to this continuing into the future.”

Shoalhaven Lifeguard Supervisor Ken Walsh, who attended the training, said that the chance to network with other emergency service personnel will be of great benefit for the lifeguards ahead of a busy summer season.

“It was a great opportunity for all the emergency services to come together and ask questions of each other.

“A highlight of the day was a visit from Westpac Lifesaver 3 Helicopter, whose crew showed the lifeguards through the aircraft and discussed operational matters during emergency situations,” he said.

“You need to be able to work together, because it’s a team effort, and it was a great chance for all of us to discuss our roles and ask a lot of questions. “I would like to thank Mollymook SLSC for hosting us, and allowing us to use their facilities.”

Mollymook will be patrolled weekdays between the hours of 9am through to 5 pm from Monday 1 December, while patrols at the other 7 beaches in the Shoalhaven region will commence on 18 December to coincide with the school holidays.

Tips for enjoying your day at the beach:

• Always swim between the red and yellow flags
• Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, wear a hat and use lots of sunscreen
• Read and observe the safety signs
• Ask a lifesaver/lifeguard for safety advice
• If you need help, stay calm and attract attention
• If you witness an in-water emergency, call Triple-Zero Police

Tue 2 Dec 2014