RNLI lifeguards praised for volunteering their time to keep beachgoers safe
Lifeguards at Newquay’s Fistral beach have been carrying out an out-of-season volunteer lifeguard each weekend in November.
When lifeguard patrols came to an end at the end of the summer season lifeguards generously volunteered their time, as in previous years, so a service could continue to operate at Fistral, which is one of the region’s busiest beaches.
Throughout November it played host to the British Stand Up Paddle Association (BSUPA) SUP Championships and the Grom Search Surf Competition.
During the competition lifeguards treated a female competitor who had sustained a fin cut to her face before she went to hospital for further treatment.
They also had to cordon off part of the beach when a chemical container washed onto the beach. A specialist team then removed the container.
RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor Anton Page says: ‘I am really proud of the effort our Newquay lifeguards make every year. We have lifeguards that volunteer their time throughout the season giving up their time to help keep Newquay’s beaches safe and then they volunteer their time every November at Fistral so that the town has at least one operational beach on the weekends at a time when it is still relatively busy. It is really nice to know that at the end of the season our lifeguards are all happy to give a little back.’
Following the end of volunteer patrols for this year, which ran between 10am and 4pm every Saturday and Sunday during November, lifeguards were thanked at a special awards ceremony.
Dave Kelly won the Gareth Nicolas trophy in recognition of all the volunteer work he does setting up training nights and programs for the lifeguards. Tom Grieves won an award for his voluntary work and for a rescue he performed outside of lifeguard hours, saving two lives at Mawgan Porth. Tom is from the local surf school and is a volunteer with the RNLI through the charity’s community lifesaving responder scheme.
With the end of lifeguard patrols, members of the public visiting the coast are reminded to help keep themselves safe by avoiding taking risks, being aware of your own capabilities, reading safety signage and carrying a means of communications. .
As part of the RNLI’s Respect the Water campaign the charity advises that you do not enter the water if you see someone in trouble, but call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard. For more information visit RNLI.org/RespectTheWater.
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The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.