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As thousands of festival revellers from as far away as Southern NSW and Queensland prepare to make their annual pilgrimage to Byron Bay for Splendour In The Grass from tomorrow, surf lifesavers have reiterated a simple message; alcohol, drugs and swimming are a deadly combination.

For those looking to cool off following a day listening to music and enjoying the festivities, Byron Bay’s Main Beach is the place to be.

Flags will be flying at this pristine location with lifeguards from the Australian Lifeguard Service on patrol from 9am-5pm.

Much of NSW may be currently shivering through the depths of winter, but conditions along the Far North Coast have been almost spring-like in the lead-up to the festival though the nights have certainly been very cold.

Early forecasts have the mercury peaking at around 23 degrees on Friday and in the high teens for much of the weekend.

If history is any guide it’s shaping up to be a busy weekend for all emergency services in region and the Far North Coast Branch Support Operations Team is suitably prepared.

The volunteer surf lifesavers who come from clubs across the area will be conducting roving patrols at local beaches throughout the festival

They will be utilising Jet Skis and ATV vehicles and are prepared to respond to any coastal emergency during what is regarded as one of the highlights of the calendar year for Byron Bay.

Local lifesavers have a simple message for the music loving crowd.

“Water, drugs and alcohol simply don’t mix,” Surf Life Saving Far North Coast Emergency Services Coordinator Jimmy Keough said in a pointed warning to the expected influx of visitors.

“We are not out to ruin the party or anyone’s fun but it’s important for people to realise that dangerous situations both in the water and on the beach can escalate quickly. This not only endangers their own lives, but puts the Lifeguards and our volunteer rescue callout teams who respond at risk as well.

“Our message is that we want everyone to enjoy the festival and get home safely so the best advice we can give is look after your mates and think twice before taking any risks,” Mr Keough concluded.

Further information about Splendour In The Grass 2018 can be found here

General Beach Safety Tips:

  • Always swim at patrolled beaches

  • Swim between the red and yellow flags. They mark the safer area for swimming

  • Never swim, surf or fish alone

  • Read and obey the signs

  • Be aware of rip currents (know how to spot one and how to escape from one)

  • Don't swim under the influence of alcohol or drugs

  • Never run or dive in the water, even if you have checked before as water conditions can change

  • If in doubt stay out

  • Seek advice from Lifeguards

Thursday 19 July 2018