Local News

Lifesavers Test Rescue Skills

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North Queensland’s surf lifesavers and nippers will test their skills at the North Queensland Branch Surf Rescue Championships and the Cairns Surf Life Saving Club Carnival on Saturday and Sunday (September 14-15) at Palm Cove.

Surf Life Saving North Queensland Branch President Rachael Wynberg said the surf sports program was designed to hone the response times and aquatic skills of future and patrolling lifesavers.

“The Surf Rescue Championships on Sunday will assess patrolling lifesavers on their resuscitation techniques, theory and physical skills including a rescue tube race, board race, beach sprint and surf race,” she said.

“The event will be followed by a day of racing at Palm Cove for lifesavers and nippers at the Cairns Carnival which this year includes endurance events for the first time.

“The U17s to Masters endurance event is a 1km swim, 1km run, 1km board and 1km run and other events include beach sprints, board relays, ski races and surf races.

“Surf lifesaving is not just a sport, it is a community service with volunteers from the Mission Beach, Etty Bay, Cairns, Ellis Beach and Port Douglas clubs keeping the beaches safe.

“In 2018-19 volunteer lifesavers in North Queensland performed 3933 preventative actions, administered first aid to 270 people, treated 163 jellyfish stings, and did nine rescues.

“Developing aquatic safety skills through surf lifesaving club pathways has led to many members being employed as lifeguards at the 14 North Queensland beaches patrolled through contracts with local councils and the Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing.”