Cork County Council is to increase their Lifeguard numbers at twelve Cork beaches following the services record breaking year last summer. In East Cork additional Lifeguards will be assigned to Youghal Front Strand, Claycastle, Redbarn and Garryvoe, to administer first aid and protect the general public.
The extra resource will ensure that three Lifeguards will be on hand at each of the four locations.
The news comes as Cllr Noel Collins criticised the Council Executive on Monday for editing his agenda item on which appeared the Southern Committee schedule. The Independent Cllr had called for all bathing areas across the Southern Division, which includes Cobh Midleton and Youghal, to have a Lifeguard and Garda presence this summer. He said “providing increased Lifeguards and Garda activity would protect swimmers and their belongings.”
Some of the conditions required for a Lifeguard to be allocated to a beach is the need to have a minimum of 200 visitors per day over a prolonged period, and risk assessed by Irish Water safety.
The County’s Senior Executive Officer, Sean O’Callaghan, said that while there may be popular beaches without a Lifeguard presence, swimmers enter the water at their own risk.
He said “these beaches may be considered “dangerous” due to prevailing conditions and, in such cases, it is advised not to put a Lifeguard in place as it could lead to increased usage.”
A new purpose built Lifeguard Station at Claycastle and Redbarn is expected to be operational ahead of the 2019 bathing season, and a new public convenience with overhead Lifeguard Station at Front Strand Youghal is currently at the public consultation stage.
It is expected that the new Lifeguard Station will be ready for construction be September 2019.