CONCERN has been expressed about the lack of full time lifeguards in Lahinch seven days a week following a number of incidents in the sea last week.
Ben Bennett of Ben’s Surf Clinic, Lahinch, has revealed eight volunteer lifeguards were involved in a total of 15 rescues and 25 assists last weekend as no Clare County Council lifeguards were rostered at the time.
Mr Bennett told the Clare Champion Lahinch was extremely busy last weekends as was like “two Bank Holiday weekends rolled into one”.
He explained a lot of people needed assistance in the water on Sunday due to the weather conditions and tides.
There were two ambulance emergency call outs in the popular North Clare resort over the weekend including one for a suspected heart attack.
Mr Bennett said there were two different incidences of missing children, one child got lost on the beach for about two hours, while a different child was found within 15 minutes.
If volunteer lifeguards weren’t available last weekend, he admitted there was the potential for a very serious incident.
A big shout out to the surfers who voluntarily spent their day yesterday literally savings lives in Lahinch. This is outdoor, staycation summer and we need the proper amenities and Lifeguards to be able to do so. If you are at a strange beach, ask where is safe to swim. pic.twitter.com/izuuDkRYGr
— Sen. Róisín Garvey (@RoisinGarvey) May 31, 2021
Clare County Council will be employing lifeguards to cover weekends from next weekend.
However, Mr Bennett has expressed concern about the lack of full time lifeguards in Lahinch in view of the fact secondary schools have closed and the number of people swimming even in poor weather had dramatically increased due to the availability of wet suits.
A Clare County Council spokesman outlined beach lifeguard services are due to commence in Clare next weekend for weekends in June, with a full-time service starting from Monday, June 28th June.
“However, in light of the level of activity at beach locations in Clare last weekend Clare County Council intends to increase the lifeguard services, particularly at busier beaches, from next weekend where lifeguards are available for weekdays also.”