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Randwick Council introduces professional lifeguarding services at two new Sydney beaches this summer

Randwick Council introduces professional lifeguarding services at two new Sydney beaches this summer
November 30, 2023

Randwick City Council is to introduce patrols by professional lifeguards at two beaches in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs, including the site of the city’s last fatal shark attack, for summer.

Preparing for a busy summer, Malabar Beach and Little Bay Beach in the Randwick local government area will now be patrolled as of 1st December after a series of near-drownings and fatal incidents.

The Council, which had previously patrolled only Maroubra, Coogee and Clovelly beaches has now hired four full-time and 10 part-time extra lifeguards to aid water safety through what is expected to be a bust summer.

As reported by the Sydney Morning Herald, Randwick City Lifeguard Luke Twitchings, who has patrolled the beaches for 12 years, said the community had been lobbying council to extend the patrols after responding to at least one incident a day at Little Bay or Malabar last summer.

Advising said any incident that occurred at the beaches had previously forced a lifeguard at the other larger beaches to leave their post and attend to the job via jet ski, leaving the rest of their team a man down, Twitchings explained “it would take us about six minutes to respond.

“Now by putting lifeguards at both of those beaches, we eradicate that six-minute response, which can sometimes be critical. Now we will be able to respond directly.”

In February last year, 35-year-old British expatriate Simon Nellist was killed in a shark attack at Little Bay in Sydney’s first shark attack in 60 years.

There have been a number of other drowning incidents at the beaches.

Randwick Council Mayor Philipa Veitch stated “our council staff conducted a review due to some incidents at Little Bay and increasing visitors, and it was decided that introducing the lifeguard services was something we really needed to do.”

Noting that the two beaches were often visited by families and international visitors who viewed them as more suitable for less confident swimmer, Mayor Veitch added “they’re not surf beaches, however, you can still run into difficulties.

“It’s important those swimmers are also looked after.”

Main Image: Randwick City Council lifeguards at Coogee Beach.

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