Lifeguard Service Plan approved

Alex Beach

Alex BeachMore efficient and effective lifeguard services providing even greater incentive for people to make a splash across Sunshine Coast’s beautiful beaches.
That’s the news for local residents and visitors to the region’s beaches following the Lifeguard Service Plan 2012-15 being endorsed by Sunshine Coast Council at today’s Ordinary Meeting.
Executive Director Community Services, Coralie Nichols said the Lifeguard Service Plan had been developed to provide appropriate levels of service delivery through addressing demand, growth and gaps in service along the Sunshine Coast to 2015.
“The plan includes the introduction of tiered service levels ranging from full time permanent locations to minimal seasonal locations,” she said.
“The allocation of beaches to tiers has taken into consideration numerous indicators including beach conditions, usage, development, population, location, amenities, infrastructure, demand and incidents.
“Beaches will be patrolled either by council lifeguard service, surf lifesaving volunteers or a combination of both.”
Lifeguard services on Sunshine Coast beaches from Noosa to Caloundra are provided primarily in combination between Sunshine Coast Council and Surf Life Saving Queensland. These services ensure that there are patrolled beaches available 365 days of the year.
Lifeguard Services Manager, Scott Braby said ongoing safety as always was paramount for council’s lifeguard services and was the main focus of the new Lifeguard Service Plan.
“Council’s lifeguards are dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and maintaining the beach as a place of enjoyment for all,” he said.
“With our beautiful beaches recognised as some of the best in Australia, they are a magnet to people moving here and to national and international visitors holidaying in the region.
“As a result, safe beaches are critical to the lifestyle and economy of the Sunshine Coast.
“This Lifeguard Service Plan has been developed to guide operational activities for the coming three years to provide a high standard of service and the ongoing safety of beach visitors across the region.
“Our lifeguard service will continue to build relationships and develop partnerships with relevant organisations to increase the effectiveness of our operations. This includes working with SLSQ and other stakeholders to maintain beach safety with the aim of providing a more effective and efficient service to residents, visitors and ratepayers.”
The plan will be implemented incrementally over the three-year period 2012 to 2015. Total increases costs for the lifeguard services will be about $420,000. Associated capital works which includes additional towers and lifeguard storage will cost about $400,000.