Surf Lifesavers: ‘Stay safe at The Bay on Australia Day’
Surf lifesavers and lifeguards are on standby for one of their busiest days of the year in the lead up to Australia Day after 303 rescues were carried out in NSW over the weekend.
It was a timely reminder for all beachgoers to swim between the red and yellow flags with hundreds of rescues and over 15,000 preventive actions (3,728 on the Far North Coast alone) on our beaches.
A number of major incidents on the Far North Coast including one just on Monday morning prompted Surf Life Saving NSW to reinforce the messages of beach safety for the Australia Day public holiday with big crowds expected across the state.
On Monday, January 25, at 10.37am, Hastings Point Lifeguards advised the State Operations Centre they required an ambulance to provide additional support with a medical incident.
Emergency Services were later informed that the medical incident occurred between the red and yellow flags.
The prompt response from ALS Lifeguards was credited by ALS Supervisor Brent Lethbridge "lifeguards were able to respond rapidly and ensure the best outcome for the patient as we have a constant visual on the flags."
Byron Bay lifeguards and lifesavers are preparing for what has become one of their toughest days of the season with swell up and good conditions forecast.
ALS Supervisor Scott McCartney has commented The Bay on Australia Day is expected to be particularly testing.
"We're expecting it to be a big, challenging day in The Bay with so many people making a day of it and often drinking over a long period," said McCartney.
"The afternoon is always really busy for us with a lot of people jumping in the water after spending hours drinking and baking in the sun or just swimming at isolated and dangerous locations," he said.
"Just stop, think and make the extra effort and swim at a patrolled location so it's a good day for everyone," said McCartney.
Patrolled locations for the Byron Bay Shire this week include;
• South Golden
• The Wreck
• Main Beach
• The Pass
• Suffolk Park
• Broken Head
For all other patrolled locations on the Far North Coast visit www.beachsafe.org.au
Although beaches will be patrolled by lifesavers and lifeguards tomorrow, Australia Day, SLSNSW urges all beachgoers to not take any unnecessary risks and please swim between the red and yellow flags.
Since 1 July 2020, 27 people have drowned on the NSW coastline, with six fatalities in the last week.
Beach Safety Tips
• Always swim between the red and yellow patrol flags, for your nearest patrolled beach check the BeachSafe app or website
• Read the safety signs for information about the beach and ask a lifesaver or lifeguard for safety information
• Always swim with someone else so you can look out for each other, and always supervise children around the water
• Never swim under the influence of alcohol or drugs
• If you need help in the water, stay calm and attract attention by raising one arm
• In an emergency, dial triple-0
For information about patrol times, weather, and beach access restrictions visit www.beachsafe.org.au.