Surf Life Saving Northern Region - Christmas-New Year Holiday Period Summary
A summary of the action at SLSNR's beaches over the
Christmas-New Year holiday period follows, along with a wrap
up on the New Year's weekend just
OVERALL SUMMARY AND STATEMENT
Dangerous use of jetskis near swimmers and issues relating to water quality have challenged Surf Life Saving Northern Region lifeguards this summer.
SLSNR Operations Manager Alan Gibson says it was fortunate no one had been injured by jetski operators at the beaches "but if the behaviour continues it's only a matter of time before a serious accident occurs." He says guards had been working hard to educate and inform the public about both issues.
Gibson says the water quality issue was significant with the heavy recent rain but also heightened because the number of locations monitored had increased significantly to 254 spots. "There are more locations and we're getting more events; it adds to the complexity of our role."
Gibson says the Christmas-New Year period was very busy at times but quieter on other days because of weather conditions and he's anticipating a lot more people at the beach in weeks to come. "The weather is forecast to be better over the next few weeks, and if it's fine people are definitely going to head to the beach."
Gibson says beachgoers need to be careful as they exit the surf when the waves are large. "We're finding a lot of people getting caught out like that." He also urged people not to take risks along the coastline. "When the surf is strong it's very unforgiving; a simple error can lead to a serious incident."
Lifeguards will continue to be on patrol at the Northern Region beaches for the next 16 weeks.
HOLIDAY PERIOD SUMMARIES
Monday 4 January - summary
4 January was a stunning day with beautiful conditions on both coasts. Both Muriwai and Raglan had more than 1000 people at the beach, and a number of other beaches including Ruakaka and Omaha had close to that figure.
There was one major incident at Muriwai where a missing diver was pulled in by a surfer at Maori Bay. Lifeguards promptly responded in an IRB and located and treated the patient. Orewa and Long Bay had poor water quality issues so spent a significant amount of time warning the public about issues.
There were also reports of multiple water craft driving dangerously fast and close to the shore at Orewa and Omaha beaches.
4 January - statistics
|No. of people rescued||4|
|No. of people assisted||4|
|No. of major first aids||4|
|No. of minor first aids||14|
|No. of searches||2|
|No. of preventatives||1155|
|No. of number involved||5250|
|No. of peak head count||9580|
|No. of hours worked||644|
Sunday 3 January - summary
January 3 was an extremely quiet day for our lifeguards on the beaches with no major incidents. Whangārei Heads had the most notable incident with one assist after a swimmer outside of the flags was assisted back to the shore without the use of a rescue tube. A total of seven minor first-aids were performed by lifeguards at Far North, Whangārei Heads, Omaha, Red Beach, Bethells and Piha.
At the end of the day after patrols had all closed, SurfCom was informed of a missing person at sea at Uretiti beach near Waipu. The person patient was quickly located but was not making any progress and appeared to be in distress and requiring assistance to get back to shore. Ruakaka and Waipu Cove Emergency Callout Squads quickly responded but the patient managed to return to shore before guards were required to intervene.
3 January - statistics
|No. of people rescued||0|
|No. of people assisted||1|
|No. of major first aids||0|
|No. of minor first aids||7|
|No. of searches||0|
|No. of preventatives||298|
|No. of number involved||1097|
|No. of peak head count||3887|
|No. of hours worked||1337.5|
Saturday 2 January - summary
A relatively quiet day, with rainy weather around most of the region. The peak head count was 450 at Piha. Kariaotahi had one search today; however, the missing person was quickly found thanks to the great work from the lifeguards and no further assistance was required. Piha also performed one search today and Muriwai rescued three swimmers.
Ruakaka and Whangārei Heads ECOS responded to an incident off Busby Head just after 6pm, with a water craft found unmanned with personal belongings on board, but were shortly stood down following the owner of the craft being found.
United and Piha closed their flags approx. 15 minutes early due to shark sightings and all swimmers were notified before the patrols ended.
Far North, Bethells and Muriwai had one minor first aid each.
2 January - statistics
|No. of people rescued||3|
|No. of people assisted||0|
|No. of major first aids||0|
|No. of minor first aids||3|
|No. of searches||2|
|No. of preventatives||250|
|No. of number involved||1876|
|No. of peak head count||4504|
|No. of hours worked||1410|
|No. of closing time||0|
New Year's holiday weekend - statistics
|1/1/2021 to 4/1/2021|
|No. of people rescued||23|
|No. of people assisted||47|
|No. of major first aids||16|
|No. of minor first aids||124|
|No. of searches||17|
|No. of preventatives||5826|
|No. of number involved||25633|
|No. of peak head count||62992|
|No. of hours worked||7823.5|
TOTAL FOR WHOLE CHRISTMAS-NEW YEAR HOLIDAY PERIOD (25 DECEMBER TO 4 JANUARY)
|25/12/2020 to 4/1/2021|
|No. of people rescued||26|
|No. of people assisted||69|
|No. of major first aids||23|
|No. of minor first aids||183|
|No. of searches||20|
|No. of preventatives||8,716|
|No. of number involved||37,265|
|No. of peak head count||100,038|
|No. of hours worked||14,126.55|