Lifeguard issue is complex as some beaches are unprotected

2015-05-20 06:00

THIS week beaches remained insufficiently protected as eThekwini lifeguards arrived for work, but were unable­ to access equipment. According to a member of the public, previously employed by eThekwini, the lifesavers wanted to work, even last week, but the beach offices were closed.

“On Friday, three lifeguards arrived for duty, but they did not have access to their equipment and were waiting for the office to open. Just a handful of cleaners arrived. When law enforcement arrived, the lifeguards were able to get in through the back door and opened the garage from the inside,” she said.

“The beaches need protecting seven­ days a week. Two weekends ago there was a receptionist at the beach office, but if there is an emergency how will the voluntary lifeguards get to the beach equipment and vehicles if it is locked?” she said.

Following inquiries, no voluntary lifesaving clubs have been asked to assist since two months ago when the problem started.

Fever attempted to contact eThekwini heads of parks, leisure and cemetries Christo Swartz and was told he had retired. Several attempts to get hold of his replacement were fruitless.

Reportedly on Saturday Amanzimtoti beach had two eThekwini lifeguards on duty and one senior in the office with the receptionist. On other beaches, there were no eThekwini lifeguards on Saturday. On Sunday, voluntary clubs manned the beach

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