The Recreation and Parks Department will deploy lifeguards to beaches and swimming pools across the City this upcoming school holiday.
The City will also appoint 13 squad leaders, who will be responsible for upholding a good quality of service and will also give supervision and guidance to the lifeguards on duty at each beach.
This year, the Recreation and Parks Department will focus on strengthening relationships with existing partners, which include the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI), Western Province Surf Lifesaving, Lifesaving South Africa and other lifesaving clubs in Cape Town to ensure that a comprehensive and collaborative service is provided.
Mayoral committee member for safety and security; and social services JP Smith said, “We have created platforms to engage with these institutions and clubs, both individually and as a collective, so as to create synergies through a coordinated approach to lifesaving. The goal is to increase water safety and reduce the drowning rate on our beaches and at our swimming pools.”
The start of the September/October school holiday marks the beginning of the summer season. In order to limit the number of water safety incidents, bathers are reminded to swim only at beaches where lifeguards are on duty.
“Holidays bring joy, relaxation, and fun. However, safety is often neglected and can lead to unfortunate situations. Swimmers often put themselves at risk of injury or death by ignoring warnings, not knowing how to swim, or using a beach in the absence of a lifeguard. The public needs to be educated on the risks and hazards of the open water,” said Mr Smith.
Lifeguards will be on duty from 10am until 6pm every day of the school holidays.
During the December school holidays this service will be extended to include more beaches.
Pools in Atlantis, Bellville South, Bonteheuwel, Eastridge, Goodwood, Hanover Park, Kensington, Khayelitsha, Manenberg, Mnandi, Muizenberg and Vulindlela will be open from Saturday December 1.
The four indoor pools in Strand, Long Street, Retreat and Blue Downs, as well as the Sea Point pool, will remain open throughout the year.