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With the Bureau of Meteorology forecasting heatwave conditions for most parts of NSW this weekend, 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 Joel Wiseman, Director of Lifesaving at Surf Life Saving NSW.

“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,” said Joel Wiseman.

He said that rock fishers and boaters are also being reminded to wear lifejackets 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,” Joel 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,” Joel Wiseman said.

The Beachsafe app can be downloaded via the Beachsafe website at


Friday 27 November 2020