Squads of police, cleaners and lifeguards to ensure a fun time for all on beachfront

2013-12-05 00:00

The eThekwini Municipality has deployed 500 Metro police officers to patrol the Durban beachfront on foot, horse and in cars 24 hours a day for the duration of the festive season that starts next week.

eThekwini Mayor James Nxumalo said with millions of people anticipated to visit Durban beaches this festive season, the municipality had left nothing to chance with regards to security on the beaches.

“Metro police, SAPS and security personnel will be deployed in strategic areas to ensure that people enjoy themselves in a safe and responsible manner.

“The police will deal with crime prevention, traffic enforcement and law enforcement. The targeted areas are north, south and central Durban beaches,” said Nxumalo.

To avoid congestion on the beachfront, certain roads leading to the vicinity will be closed to motorists from December 13 to 17; 24 to 27; and December 30 to January 2, 2014 (see graphic).

Residents and hotel guests will be given access permits to get to the vicinity. Buses and taxis will drop off passengers and park at the drive-in site in Stalwart Simelane (Stanger) Street.

Municipal deputy head of parks, leisure and cemeteries Christo Swart said to increase security, two additional CCTV centres have recently been opened.

One is situated in Pinetown and the other at the beachfront.

To keep the city clean, the Durban solid waste department has extended working hours to two shifts, with sweeping activities conducted from 6 am to 10 pm daily.

“About 48 permanent lifeguards, 58 seasonal lifeguards and some voluntary lifeguards will be situated at various bathing beaches to ensure the safety of all bathers. Swimming times will be from 6 am to 6 pm for the central beach and swimming pools and 6 am to 5 pm for the district aquatic facilities,” Swart said.

Swart urged parents to approach any of the 100 “beach buddies” for assistance on arrival at the beach.

He said there will be gazebos marked “Separated Children” where lost children will be looked after until collected by their parents, who will have to produce proof of identity.

“Last year our beaches had a footprint of about three million people. As is the trend, we expect the number to increase. As the tourists will be taking advantage of our scenic destinations, we urge them to do so in a safe and responsible manner, as we would like to see them go back home refreshed and ready to start the new year,” Swart said.

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