NSW volunteer surf lifesavers and lifeguards are urging the public to be surf safe this Australia Day long weekend.
With many set to enjoy a long weekend and some expected to take extra days off in the lead-up to Friday’s public holiday, lifesavers are anticipating more than 1 million people to flock to the coastline.
It’s a dangerous cocktail of ingredients which sees the coastal drowning risk climb by four times on Australia Day.
Equally, the risk is 1.5x as likely during school holidays and more than two times as likely on public holidays generally and long weekends.
Since December 1, there has been 11 coastal drownings recorded across the state.
Callout teams and additional Support Operations assets are on standby across the state, with jetskis, inflatable rescue boats and drones out in force. Duty Officers in each region will be performing enhanced proactive surveillance activities and the State Operations Centre in Sydney has additional operators rostered to cope with the number of incidents which are expected.