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RNLI lifeguards in the south west prepare for a weekend of sun and surf

Lifeguards News Release

With a weekend forecast of late summer sun and good surf, the RNLI in the south west is urging anyone visiting the coast to choose a lifeguarded beach.

RNLI/Nathan Williams

Busy Fistral Beach in Cornwall

Autumn is here, but the sun seems to be sticking around, and with temperatures of up to 21 degrees celsius forecast for this weekend, as well as 4-6ft swell predicted in some areas, the RNLI lifeguards are expecting a busy couple of days on the beaches.

If you’re heading to the coast this weekend the RNLI has patrols on a number of beaches in the region. In Cornwall you’ll find lifeguards on Fistral, Perranporth, Portmeor and Sennen daily until Sunday 29 October.

Bantham, Tregonhawke, Praa Sands, Towan, Watergate Bay, Mawgan Porth, Porthtowan, Gwithian, Constantine, Harlyn, Polzeath, Widemouth, Croyde, Summerleaze, Woolacombe and Le Braye (Jersey), are also being patrolled every weekend, and every day during the October half term.

Regional Lifeguard Lead Guy Botterill said:

‘With sun forecast for this weekend, we’d like to encourage the public to enjoy the weather safely by visiting a lifeguarded beach. Across the south west coast, there are plenty of beaches still being patrolled on the weekends until the end of October.

‘RNLI lifeguards position the red and yellow flags in the safest area of the beach for swimming, and the black and white flags for surfing, kayaking and paddleboarding.’

‘Bigger swell at this time of year increases the likelihood and strength of rip currents. If you get caught in a rip, don’t fight against it. Preserve your energy by floating and then wave and shout for help.’

The RNLI’s key safety advice for anyone visiting the coast is:

- Before you head out, make sure it's safe. Check the tide tables and the wind direction – if you’re paddleboarding or kayaking beware of offshore winds.

- While you're out, be aware of your surroundings and the tide's direction.

- In an emergency call 999 or 112– if you are at sea or on the beach ask for the coastguard

- If you do find yourself in the water unexpectedly, Float To Live: Tilt your head back with ears submerged, relax and try to control your breathing, move your hands to help you stay afloat and once you are over the initial shock, call for help or swim to safety

- More information on how to Float to Live:

Media Contacts

For more information please contact Anya Walton Media Engagement Placement [email protected] or 07890066217. Alternatively please contact Emma Haines Regional Media Officer [email protected] or 07786668847.

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 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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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 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.