Lifeguard patrols to return to Sandy Bay beach as RNLI rolls out more cover as lockdown eases

RNLI lifeguards will begin patrols on Sandy Bay beach in just over a week’s time as the sea safety charity continues to increase its service as the coronavirus lockdown eases.

Lifeguard patrols returned to Exmouth earlier in June, as the RNLI announced its intention to have cover on more than 70 per cent of beaches across the South West by the start of July.

From Saturday, July 4, lifeguard patrols return to Sandy Bay beach, near Exmouth.

The RNLI this week announced that from Saturday, June 27, lifeguards will be patrolling Dawish Warren and Teignmouth North, in Devon, and Kennack, Gyllyngvase, Godrevy, Gwithian South, Upton Towans, Beachview, Porthminster, Gwenver, Porthcurno, Porthcothan, Boobys, and Trevone in Cornwall.

Other Devon beaches receiving cover from July 4 are Westward Ho!, Sandymere, Blackpool Sands, and Challaborough.

And in Cornwall beaches at Seaton, Tregantle, Crantock, Towan, Porth, Tolcarne, St Agnes, Perran Sands, and Sandymouth will have lifeguard patrols.

Burnham-on-Sea in Somerset; and Lyme Regis and West Bay in Dorset. Crackington Haven, in Bude, will be lifeguarded from Thursday, July 9.

Guy Botterill RNLI area lifesaving manager in the South West said: “The charity have been providing a lifeguard service on a limited number of beaches since the beginning of June which has enabled us to thoroughly test the new ways of working, PPE, staffing and new equipment as a result of coronavirus.

“Despite the continuing challenges created by the pandemic, we are now confident we can provide a safe, comprehensive lifeguard service this summer.

“It has taken a lot of hard work by the whole team, especially our RNLI lifeguard supervisors and technicians, but we are really pleased to be able to provide safety cover on over seventy per cent of the beaches we’d usually cover by the beginning of July.”

The RNLI said, because of the coronavirus, the public will see lifeguards wear PPE similar to ambulance crews in some situations.

Photo: RNLI

New protocols for all first responders mean the lifeguards may not deal with some minor first aid cases but will support people to treat themselves.

They will also try to keep socially distant from beach goers, and may need to adopt different patrol methods at times, such as not using the red and yellow flags and asking people to keep apart but close to shore, to help keep people safe while maintaining social distancing, the charity said.

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