Surf lifesavers are men and women who volunteer their time to provide aquatic supervision all over Australia's coastal environment. Volunteer surf lifesavers are an amazing group of people who provide a unique humanitarian service.
Currently Surf Life Saving Western Australia has over 5,000 active surf lifesavers that patrol WA beaches over every weekend of summer through affiliated community based volunteer clubs. Surf lifesavers wear the internationally recognised red and yellow patrol uniform and patrol cap.
Click here if you're interested in becoming a surf lifesaver
All volunteer Surf Life Saving clubs provide beach patrols on their allocated beaches. Clubs may provide more than one swimming area if there is the requirement in their area.
The beach patrol is a team of volunteer members rostered on for duty for a specified time. The patrol team is coordinated by the Patrol Captain who is responsible for the coordination of actions in monitoring the beach and in times of rescue and emergency care.
All surf lifesavers in Western Australia complete their training through their local Surf Life Saving club for the Surf Life Saving Australia Bronze Medallion (Certificate II in Public Safety - Aquatic Rescue). The Bronze Medallion is a Nationally Recognised Qualification and teaches a range of activities in order to be able to perform all the basic requirements of a lifesaver:
• Occupational Health and Safety
• Beach types
• Wave patterns
• First aid
• Communication techniques
• Radio communications
• Multiple rescue techniques
• Patrolling methods
Lifesavers are also trained in many Powercraft and Emergency Care awards which assist with their patrolling operations.
Surf Life Saving personnel utilise a wide variety of equipment to assist in patrolling the beaches of Western Australia. Rescue equipment comes in many different forms and is designed to accommodate difficult surf environments, and its many hazards.
These consist of:
• Rescue Tube
• First Aid/Medical Equipment
• Oxygen Equipment
• Rescue Board
• Inflatable Rescue Boat
• Wesfarmers Emergency Response Team - Waverunners (rescue jetskis)
• All Terrain Vehicles
• Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter
Example of a typical morning shift for a volunteer surf lifesaver
- 7.00am Wake up, breakfast, shower, get patrol gear together
- 7.45am Travel to local surf club
- 8.00am Arrive at surf club and meet with other surf lifesavers
- 8.10am Pre-patrol briefing for the morning's activities
- 8.15am Check equipment, surf conditions and take down to beach
- 8.30am Raise the red and yellow flags and radio to SurfCom
- 8.45am Roving patrols begin north and south of flags with Powercraft or vehicles
- 9.15am Patrolling activities at the waters' edge
- 9.30am Rotation activities
- 10.30am Patrolling activities again
- 11.00am Minor first aid in the patrol arena
- 11.15am Complete Incident Report Form
- 11.30am Roving patrols begin north and south of flags with Powercraft or vehicles
- 12.00pm Continue patrolling and prepare for change over
- 12.30pm Complete log books and remove cap
- 12.45pm Participate in patrol debriefing
- 1.00pm Travel home
Below you will find a list of generic position descriptions and duty statements for key positions within the lifesaving area of the Club.
Clubs can adopt the document in full or use the document as a template and customise the position description according to Club requirements including the constitution and regulations of the Club.