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RNLI lifeguards return to Southport this weekend

RNLI lifeguards are set to begin their full-time summer safety service this weekend along Southport beach. From Saturday (26th May) lifeguards will be providing daily safety patrols along the shoreline and Andy Jordan, RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, is expecting another busy season for the Southport team. He said: “The north west has some beautiful beaches, but we would always encourage anyone planning a trip to the seaside to visit a lifeguarded beach and always swim between the red and yellow flags.” From Saturday (26th May) lifeguards will be on duty at Southport daily between 10am and 6pm until the end of the season on 2nd September. Full-time lifeguard cover is already provided at Crosby and Ainsdale beaches. RNLI Lifeguards have also returned to the National Trust beach at Formby on weekends and will be there full time from Saturday 30th June. The lifeguard service is provided in partnership with Sefton Borough Council. Lifeguards responded to 1,167 incidents across the North West and North Wales last year and rescued or assisted 6,789 people.

The RNLI has launched its Respect the Water drowning prevention campaign, with advice for anyone who finds themselves unexpectedly in cold water. Most people who die around the UK coast never expected to enter the water at all and the RNLI is urging anyone who falls into cold water to fight their instincts and remember one simple skill – floating – which could save lives from drowning. Andy said: “We often rely on our instincts but our instinctive response to sudden immersion in cold water – gasping, thrashing and swimming hard – is potentially a killer. It increases the chances of water entering your lungs, increases the strain on your heart, cools the skin further and lets air escape from any clothing, which then reduces buoyancy. “Although it’s counter-intuitive, the best immediate course of action in that situation is to fight your instinct and try to float or rest, just for a short time. The effects of cold water shock will pass quite quickly, within 60–90 seconds. Floating for this short time will let you regain control of your breathing and your survival chances will greatly increase. “It’s our goal to halve the number of accidental coastal deaths by 2024.”

For more information and advice on all aspects of beach and coastal safety visit the RNLI’s Respect the Water campaign website at

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