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RNLI lifeguards prepare for Camber Sands patrols

Lifeboats News Release

Beach lifeguards from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution start training at Camber Sands on 16 May 2017 ahead of their first full summer season on the Sussex beach.

Already qualified as beach lifeguards, the team will be starting a two-week induction programme at Camber Sands that covers advanced first aid, search and rescue techniques and local risks and hazards.

The RNLI is providing a seasonal lifeguard service in the popular seaside location following a formal request from Rother District Council. In previous years the council provided a beach patrol service. This year RNLI’s lifeguards will be working alongside the Council’s beach patrol.

Peter Dawes, RNLI Lifesaving Service Manager, said:

‘The RNLI provides lifeguards on over 240 beaches in the UK and Channel Island. We’re fully committed to helping visitors to Camber Sands enjoy the beach safely and our lifeguards will be on hand to give advice and rescue those in difficulty if needed.’

The team of RNLI lifeguards will operate from beach lifeguard units located at Camber Sands Central and Camber Sands West. Four lifeguards will patrol on Camber Sands Central from 10am – 6pm, seven days a week from 27 May until 1 October. A further two lifeguards will patrol at Camber Sands West 10am – 6pm seven days a week from 8 July until 10 September.

Peter continued: ‘Our lifeguards are highly skilled with world class training and equipment, which means they are ready to help prevent incidents and to respond if people do get into difficulty in the water.’

In 2016, RNLI lifeguards on 227 beaches around the UK dealt with 17,414 incidents and helped 20,538 people. Incidents ranged from slips, trips and stings to more serious water-based rescues. In total they saved 127 lives overall.

Joe Mitchell, RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, says:

‘Lifeguards have a demanding job requiring commitment, skill and a high level of fitness, and we have a great team ready to patrol Camber Sands. They’ve already completed a high standard of training and fitness tests, and these next two weeks are about really familiarising themselves with this beach.

‘They will use a variety of equipment including rescue boards, inshore rescue watercraft and vehicles where appropriate, so training is essential. But a key part of their work is prevention so they will be asking people to respect the water and be offering advice on how to stay safe by learning about rip currents, tides and other local dangers.’

Notes to Editors

· There is a media opportunity planned at Camber Central at 12.30pm on Tuesday 16 May.

· As there is an inquest due shortly in relation to the tragic incidents from last summer at Camber Sands, we will not be commenting on anything related to it.

· RNLI lifeguards will be patrolling Camber Sands at two locations:

o Four lifeguards will patrol on Camber Sands Central from 10am – 6pm, seven days a week from 27 May until 1 October.

o A further two lifeguards will patrol at Camber Sands West 10am – 6pm seven days a week from 8 July until 10 September.

RNLI media contacts

For more information, contact Paul Dunt, RNLI Press Officer, on 0207 6207416 or 07786 668825 or Alternatively, contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 or by email.


The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland