The 2017/18 patrol season might be only a week old, but Lifeguards from across Northern NSW are confident that their hard work will pay off during what they are anticipating will be another busy summer.

The combination of the school holidays and rising temperatures have meant they’ve had to be on top of their game, and in many ways it has been a baptism of fire for the Australian Lifeguard Service rookie recruits.

Undaunted by the challenges, and thrilled to be outside in the surf and sun living their passion the Lifeguards believe Training School held earlier this month has played in terms of preparing for the season.

“The Lifeguard School has been an integral part of preparing new Lifeguards for several years, and while initially it was about informing them about their roles and responsibilities it has evolved to become so much,” said Ruben Roxburgh Lifeguard Education Coordinator.

“This year we’ve really tried to broaden the program to not only focus on developing the participant’s skills but also working closely with other emergency services to build relationships that will become important at future incidents.”

The program was held at a new location in 2017 with the Lake Ainsworth Sport & Recreation Centre at Lennox Head hosting the intensive four-day-school for the first time.

Along with the Lifeguards from the ALS, representatives from NSW Police, Fire & Ambulance attended as well as the Westpac Rescue Helicopter, while State Duty Officer Jimmy Keogh presented on the importance of volunteer surf lifesavers working in conjunction with the ALS in emergency situations.

It wasn’t just the emergency services community who believe in the positive impact of the Lifeguard School but other local businesses who were keen to be associated with the strong brand of the ALS.

Woolworths Ballina Fair generously supported the program by supplying the food for the school as well as conducting a fresh food and hydration seminar with the new recruits.

“Lifeguards need to not only be aware of their on-beach roles and responsibilities, but also the importance of looking after themselves so they are able to be “rescue ready”, fit and able to respond to any situation,” said Mr Roxburgh.

“We’re extremely grateful for Woolworths for their support and I know that our Lifeguards can’t wait to get out and do what they do best; ensuring that the beach and ocean environment is a happy and safe one for everyone,” he concluded.

Lifeguards from the ALS will patrol the following Northern NSW Locations throughout the School Holiday Period;

Tweed – Duranbah, Fingal, Cudgen/Kingscliff, Salt, Casuarina, Cabarita, Hastings, Pottsville North, Pottsville South

Byron – Brunswick, First Sun, Main Beach Byron, The Pass, Wategos, Tallows

Ballina – Lennox Head, Sharps, Shelly, Lighthouse

Richmond Valley – Evans Head

Clarence Valley – Turners, Main Beach Yamba

Tips For Keeping Safe At The Beach

  • 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 your arm
  • In an emergency, dial Triple Zero Police
  • For information about patrol times, weather, and beach locations visit the Beachsafe Website or Download the App