Visitors to Tathra Beach on the state’s Far South Coast will once again be able to enjoy the benefits of a lifeguard patrolled beach on weekdays into February after local businesses united to fund an additional month of patrols for a fourth straight summer.

The Australian Lifeguard Service (ALS) will provide a lifeguard service to patrol Tathra Beach for this additional period as they have in previous years with the highly professional lifeguards a welcome sight for tourists and locals alike.

Tathra Beach will now be the only beach from Mollymook through to the Victorian border that will be patrolled through to February 25th following the completion of summer contracts which saw eight Bega Valley beaches throughout December and January.

Additionally, volunteer surf lifesavers will be on duty across the region during weekends providing more opportunities for beachgoers to swim at a patrolled location.

Having Tathra patrolled during the week is a bonus for holidaying families and retirees who can take advantage of the safe patrolled beach and the local knowledge that the lifeguards will bring to the job during what promises to be a busy and hot end to summer.

To highlight just how important this service is to the community one only needs to look at the statistics from the previous three summers of 2015-17.

Almost 20,000 people have visited Tathra Beach during the extended month of patrol with lifeguards performing 1,500 preventative actions, six significant rescues (rescues that would have resulted in serious injury or a drowning), and 38 first aids during that time.

Rob White from Tathra Beach House Apartments who spearheaded the inaugural campaign in 2015 is delighted that they were able to secure funding from the local business community believing it offers a point of difference to the region.

“When school goes back and our January visitors return to work, we see our most vulnerable guests visit Tathra – young families and senior travellers,” said Mr White

“Many of them come from Canberra and we feel a duty of care to these people.

“Providing a life guard service beyond the December – January service covered by Bega Valley Shire Council is a big part of ensuring they feel welcome and safe in our beautiful part of the world,” he said.

Local business organisations Big 4 Tathra Beach, Tathra Beachside, Tathra Beach House Apartments, and the Tathra Business Chamber have all backed the campaign by donating significant funds to assist in the provision of the lifeguard service for an extra month, and have been involved since the beginning.

In the ensuring years additional businesses have been willing to come on board with Tathra Beach Bowling Club, Bega Chamber of Commerce, Tathra Lions Club, Tathra Hotel, Tathra Beach Country Club, On The Perch Bird Park and Bendigo Community Bank also contributing funds, while Ian Campbell from About Regional has been a strong supporter of promoting safety messages.

“The past few seasons have proved extremely successful in having additional lifeguard patrols for that extra month, and we are delighted that the business community have come aboard again this year,” said ALS NSW Lifeguard Operations Manager Oliver Munson

“We’re looking forward to returning to Tathra Beach and delivering a high quality of service throughout February so that visitors and locals can enjoy the beach throughout peak summer,” Mr Munson concluded.