Volunteer lifesavers have returned to 15 beaches across the Sunshine Coast, with the 2022/23 patrol season officially underway in time for the September school holidays.
With plenty of visitors expected this spring break, Surf Life Saving Queensland is reminding beachgoers to only swim at patrolled beaches and always between the red and yellow flags.
The Sunshine Coast recorded the second highest number of beach-related drownings in Queensland last patrol season, with three people tragically drowning at local beaches.
That means that 31 percent of beach-related drownings in Queensland occurred on the Sunshine Coast.
SLSQ lifesavers and lifeguards on the Sunshine Coast performed 1424 rescues, with 317 of them being children under the age of twelve years.
The statistics have been revealed as part of the release of the 2022 Coast Safe Report.
Sunshine Coast Regional Manager Aaron Purchase has once again urged beachgoers to only swim at patrolled beaches and during patrol hours this season.
“We are seeing far too many rescues and drownings occurring outside of patrolled areas or outside of patrol hours,” said Mr Purchase.
“Across Queensland, 69 percent of beach-related drownings occurred less than one kilometre from a patrolled area.
“It is important for beachgoers to be aware of their surroundings and walk the extra few hundred metres to swim between the red and yellow flags.
“As Sunshine Coast volunteer lifesavers return to our beaches this weekend, they will be supported by operations support patrols, like jet skis, that operate roving patrols to cover identified blackspots.”