Lifeguard gets top job
GREG Hackfath, Coffs Harbour City Council's senior lifeguard, has been appointed national president of the Professional Ocean Lifeguard Association (APOLA).
"Being president of APOLA is a great honour," said Greg, who has been Council's senior lifeguard for seven years.
"However, the strength of the Association comes from the knowledge, skills and diversity of the guys and girls who make up its membership who are mainly career, professional lifeguards.
"I hope that I can draw on their experience and strength to assist in improving beach and water safety not just in Coffs Harbour, but nationally," he said.
"I consider that I'm only one person in a team that makes up the executive of APOLA and I hope that I can do the position justice," he said.
Greg has been involved with Surf Life Saving clubs since he was 16 and has been a surfer and diver for 25 years. Since he took over the management of Council's Lifeguard Service seven years ago, he has progressed a number of changes including the adoption of two-man patrols on beaches in the summer months and the acquisition of further specialist rescue and first aid equipment.
Since 1998, Council's professional lifeguards have carried out 411 successful rescues, 616 first aid cases and 50,857 preventative actions.