RNLI lifeguards return to keep Devon beaches safe for 2016 summer season
RNLI lifeguards will take up daily posts on the county’s beaches from this weekend (Saturday 30 April) as patrols for the 2016 summer season get underway.
Patrols will begin on Bantham and Sedgewell Cove in the South Hams, and Croyde and Woolacombe in north Devon from Saturday.
Over the last few weeks lifeguard teams have been visiting local primary schools in north Devon, South Hams and Torbay as part of the ‘Meet the Lifeguards’ programme, and estimate that they’ve spoken to over 15,000 school children about how to stay safe on the beach.
Steve Instance, RNLI Senior Lifeguard Manager for the South West says;
‘It’s that time again when the RNLI lifeguards make a welcome return to beaches around the south west coastline. The lifeguard teams were on patrol on a number of beaches over the Easter holidays and we look forward to keeping beachgoers safe over the summer season.
‘Whether you are local to Devon, or visiting on holiday, we’d urge beachgoers to head to an RNLI lifeguarded beach and to swim in the supervised area between the red and yellow flags.
‘If you are planning on getting in the water, it’s worth remembering that the sea temperature is still cold so it’s important people wear a suitable wetsuit. Try and stay within your depth and follow the lifeguard’s advice. If you get into trouble, stick your hand in the air and shout for help. If you see someone else in trouble, tell a lifeguard, or if you can’t see a lifeguard, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.
‘It is also very important to check the tide times before setting out and always carry a means of calling for help in case you should get caught out.’
The RNLI is currently recruiting lifeguards to work the forthcoming season at beaches in the South Hams district. For more information visit: jobs.RNLI.org.
You can find your nearest lifeguarded beach by visiting RNLI.org.
Notes to editors
The RNLI’s national fundraising event Mayday is running from 26 April–2 May 2016 with fundraising events taking place around the UK. For more information visit rnli.org.uk/mayday
Beaches patrolled in Devon from April 30: Bantham, Sedgewell Cove, Croyde and Woolacombe.
Patrols will begin on the following beaches from May 21: Exmouth, Dawlish Warren, Teignmouth North, Challaborough, Westward Ho! and Sandymere.
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Key facts about the RNLI
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.
The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.
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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland