Lifeguard patrols in South West come to an end for another year
Full-time lifeguard patrol on South West beaches will officially end for the season this weekend.
Patrols at the majority of beaches in Devon and Cornwall will finish on Sunday.
However, lifeguard cover will continue on 12 of the busiest beaches across the region during weekends in October and throughout the school half-term break.
These beaches include Praa Sands, Gwithian, Porthmeor, Porthtowan, Perranporth, Polzeath, Widemouth and Summerleaze in Cornwall and Bantham, Croyde and Woolacombe in Devon.
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For the second year running Fistral Beach in Newquay will have full-time cover during October and will also be patrolled during weekends in November by volunteer lifeguards.
Steve Instance, RNLI Lifeguard Inspector, said additional funding has allowed the RNLI to provide lifeguard cover at selected beaches for a longer period.
He said: “This year has been another busy season for RNLI lifeguards on beaches around the South West as the teams have dealt with a range of incidents from major and minor first aids, lost children, and numerous rescues of people in difficulty in the water.
“Thanks to additional funding from local authorities and private beach owners, the charity is again able to extend the lifeguard season into October on a selection of beaches providing safety cover for those looking to prolong the summer season and enjoy the favourable surf conditions that autumn brings.”
Mr Instance also offered advice to those heading to the coast throughout the winter months.
He said: “We’d recommend that people take note of the safety signage at the entrance to the beach, always go with a friend or tell someone on the shore where they are going and be aware of the conditions and their own capabilities in the water.
“If water users should find themselves in difficulty they should keep hold of their surf or bodyboard as it’ll help keep them afloat. Walkers should also find out about the local tide times and avoid visiting more remote parts of the shoreline when the tide is coming in.”