TDHS Port Campbell Surf Life Saving Club Summer Warning

“If we can’t see you, we can’t save you”

Port Campbell is the only patrolled beach between Apollo Bay and Warrnambool – but unfortunately for surf life savers too many people are still choosing to cool off in other locations along the coast.

Port Campbell Surf Life Saving Club president Scott McKenzie is urging locals and visitors alike to swim between the flags and make it a safe Summer in the south west.

“The country-wide message is ‘please swim between the flags’. People who make bad decisions put themselves and our volunteer life savers at risk,” Mr McKenzie said.

“We have very few incidents each year at the Port Campbell beach itself. The majority of our incidents involve being called out away from our patrolled beach to attend rescues at places anywhere from Moonlight Head to Childers Cove.

“Even reasonably strong swimmers can get themselves in trouble in these non-patrolled areas and with the increasing number of visitors to the coast each year it’s an ongoing issue.”

Mr McKenzie said enjoying the great outdoors was a wonderful thing to do when it was done safely.

“Water safety is such an important issue for us as a community and society – not just at the beach, but in pools, dams, rivers, creeks and water holes,” he said.

“The water is a great place to stay active, to have a lot of fun with friends and to enjoy the warmer weather, but unfortunately it’s also where some people make bad decisions.

“We’re working with Timboon and District Healthcare Service to help educate our community and our visitors – it’s about working together for a healthy community,” – Scott McKenzie

“Our club is very much a part of the Timboon community as well as the Port Campbell community – the whole wider network along the coast is really important.

“Timboon is our closest ambulance station and a lot of our Nipper kids have parents who work here at the hospital.

“There are a lot of crossovers not the least of which is creating wonderful opportunities for people of all ages to be active, have fun, learn water safety and come together socially.

“We have 277 members – more than 70 of whom actively patrol the beach. I’m pleading with community members to keep everyone safe this Summer by swimming between the flags.”

Last Summer in Victoria, according to Surf Lifesaving Victoria, there were 26 reported fatal drowning incidents from 1 December 2018 to 28 February 2019. This was 10 more than the 5-year average from 1 December 2013 to 28 February 2018.

  • Sue Wilson
    Posted at 21:10h, 03 January Reply

    Well said Scott!

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