RNLI to watch over West Sussex beaches
Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) lifeguards watch over West Sussex beaches for the half-term holiday (Monday 30th May – Friday 3rd June), when people normally visit the coast to enjoy the summer sunshine.
The charity’s lifeguards, in partnership with Arun District Council, carry on their daily safety patrols on some of the county’s busiest beaches from 10am to 6pm, throughout the half-term holiday.
Last year, almost half a million visitors enjoyed the beautiful beaches in the area, with RNLI lifeguards there attending 212 incidents and aiding 254 people.
RNLI safety tips for those heading to the beach or in the water
- Swim at a lifeguarded beach, between the red and yellow flags
- Never use inflatables in strong winds or rough seas
- Check tide times before you go
- If you get into trouble, stick your hand in the air and shout for help
- If you see someone else in trouble, tell a lifeguard as soon as you can. If you can’t see a lifeguard, call 999 or 112 immediately and ask for the Coastguard.
Although the weather is getting warmer, the water temperature is still cold and can seriously affect your physical response. If you find yourself in difficulty in the water, try to keep calm and not panic or fight against any currents.
If you’re able to do so, lean back and extend your arms and legs to keep your mouth and nose out of the water. Float until you can control your breathing which should only take around one minute. Then call for help and raise your hand to attract attention or try to swim to safety.
RNLI lifeguards have all undergone comprehensive training and passed rigorous fitness tests to ensure that they are ready for a busy season ahead. 95% of the lifeguards’ role is preventative, and the teams will be on hand to offer friendly safety advice to visitors.
RNLI West Sussex lifeguards and Arun District Council
Thomas Ward, Seasonal RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor in West Sussex, said: “The charity’s lifeguards in West Sussex spend a great amount of time developing their lifesaving and first aid skills to help visitors enjoy their time on the beach. We have worked closely alongside partners and local communities to ensure the beaches and lifeguard units are ready and equipped for the 2022 season.
“Our teams are there to offer extra peace of mind to beachgoers so they can have a great day out in the sunshine. RNLI lifeguards will carry on patrolling the Littlehampton beach during the half-term holiday and are available to help anyone who gets into trouble. Our patrols in West Sussex went full time from 14th May and will continue through to 4th September.”
And Cllr Jacky Pendleton from Arun District Council, said: “We are delighted to welcome back the RNLI to Littlehampton and Bognor Regis this summer. So many visitors and of course, our residents, love to enjoy the beach, so knowing the Lifeguards are in place brings peace of mind.
“We also urge those visiting the beach to follow all the sensible guidance the RNLI provide to keep themselves safe and able to enjoy the seaside as their safety is our main concern.”
Local lifeguard beaches in West Sussex
The lifeguarded beaches where members of the public can swim safely over the half-term holiday from 10am until 6pm are:
- Littlehampton East (West)
- Littlehampton East (East)
A peak season service will also begin on other West Sussex beaches in time for the school holidays. On Bognor Regis daily patrolling will start on 9th July.
To find your nearest lifeguarded beach visit rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeguarded-beaches
To find out more information about how to float and what to do if you find yourself caught in cold water visit rnli.org/magazine-featured-list/how-to-float