Lifeguard patrols shelved due to Government advice on coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 07:00 29 March 2020

The RNLI lifeguarda. Picture: RNLI/Nigel Millard

The RNLI lifeguarda. Picture: RNLI/Nigel Millard

Nigel Millard

RNLI lifeguard patrols are to ‘pause’ in light of the latest Government advice on coronavirus.

The RNLI has announced that the rollout of patrols onto beaches has been stopped to ensure lifeguards adhere to the Government’s instructions to limit contact between people.

The lifeguards patrol Exmouth and Lyme Bay in East Devon.

An RNLI spokesman said: “Ordinarily, lifeguards work and train in groups, which makes keeping the requirement to remain two metres apart difficult.

“The nature of their work with the public puts them – and beach visitors – at risk of close contact.

“Also, their usual activity includes encouraging people to visit patrolled beaches and swim in certain areas – this activity would go against the Government’s clear instruction for people to stay at home, maintain social distancing and not congregate in groups.

This decision will affect around 390 trained lifeguards who were preparing to patrol beaches in the next few weeks.


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