RNLI lifeguards on Whitesands Beach for autumn half-term holidays

Lifeguards News Release

RNLI lifeguards will be maintaining patrols one of Pembrokehire’s busiest beaches over the school half-term period (28 October – 5 November).

RNLI/Chris Cousens

More and more people are now looking to spend time at the beach out of the summer season, and the charity’s lifeguard team expects high numbers of people to visit Whitesands beach, near St Davids, during the autumn school break.

The lifeguard team has been stationed on the beach on weekends throughout October, but will return to a daily safety service for the holiday week. Between 10am and 4pm lifeguards will be offering safety advice and assistance to beachgoers.

RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor Sam Trevor said: ‘It has been a busy 2017 season for our lifeguards who have worked hard to keep large numbers of beachgoers safe. They are well trained to deal with a whole range of scenarios from rescues in the water, to first aid incidents and lost children.

‘As we have seen in recent weeks, storms can bring high winds and large swells to our coasts at this time of year and we would encourage people who are planning to head to the coast this half term to visit Whitesands if they can, where lifeguards will be on hand should they need them.’

Sam added: ‘We know not everyone in the county will be able to get to Whitesands, so for those who aren’t able to head to a lifeguarded beach, it’s important they take steps to keep themselves and their families safe. People should always read safety signage at the entrance to a beach, go with a friend or tell someone on the shore where they are going, be aware of the conditions and their own capabilities in the water, check the tide times and carry a means of communication.’

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. If you have something that floats, throw it to them.

Anyone who finds themselves unexpectedly in cold water should fight their instincts to panic or fight against any currents, but instead should relax and float on their backs for 60-90 seconds, allow the effects of cold water shock to pass before swimming to safety, holding onto anything buoyant they have, calling for help and raising their hand to attract attention and trying to keep their head above water.

You can find out more about how to stay safe in and around the water by visiting RNLI.org/RespectTheWater.

Note to editors:

· The attached picture is a stock photo of an RNLI lifeguard in action.

· Interviews available on request

· You can find your nearest RNLI lifeguarded beach by using our tool here: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeguarded-beaches

RNLI media contacts:

For more information please contact Chris Cousens, RNLI Regional Media Officer, on 07748 265496 or by emailing Chris_Cousens@rnli.org.uk.

Key facts about the RNLI

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.

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