As summer comes to an end, so has the seven weeks of regional lifeguard patrols for the season.
The Sunset Beach regional guard took place from 19 December 2016 to 3 February 2017 and included Monday to Friday and Public Holidays.
They saw huge beach usage over the seven week period, with 350 people on the beach being the most for one day.
The lifeguards were constantly tested by the conditions and finding the safest place to put the flagged area for the public to swim in was always a challenge.
The rips and currents were the biggest challenge at Sunset Beach and many hours were spent urging the public to stay within the flagged area.
Over the seven weeks, the team had multiple mass rescues where the swimmers drifted north out of the flagged area and were quickly out of their depth.
“We worked incredibly well as a team unit to successfully save all of the people who needed help. Many of these people expressed gratitude that the lifeguards were patrolling. They expressed concerned that they may not have made it without lifeguard help,” said lifeguard Robbie Shrimpton.
The guards also enjoyed educating the public about the surf conditions, where to swim and how to use preventative actions.
While the regional patrol has finished for the season, the volunteer lifeguards will still be manning the beach over the weekends until 17 April 2017.
One of the busiest days saw over 350 people on Sunset Beach during the regional patrol. Photo by Glennys Smith.