Patrol trial reveals Jetty Beach potential
A lifeguard patrol trial at Jetty Beach found it was the third most visited beach within the Local Government Area behind Sawtell and Park beaches.
The trial was conducted from December 27, 2019 to January 27, 2020 with two professional ocean lifeguards rostered daily at the Northern end of Jetty Beach midway between the pier and Yacht Club.
It was carried out in conjunction with a trial of a number of inclusive access facilities including beach wheelchairs and a special access mat.
Recent work at the Northern end of the Jetty Foreshores has already included a number of access features such as improved parking, amenities, pathways and an accessible ramp to the beach.
And with plans moving ahead with the Jetty Foreshores Stage 5 Carpark Project there will be even more visitors to the area.
It's part of Coffs Harbour City Council's vision to make the beach accessible for all.
RELATED: Jetty access under the spotlight
A report on the trial will be considered at this week's Coffs Harbour City Council meeting.
It indicates that Council will need funding of $43,500 in the next quarterly budget review to establish a Jetty Beach service that includes peak summer lifeguard patrol as an annual service and ongoing provision and management of the beach wheelchair access mat.
There is no Surf Life Saving Club (SLSC) in that specific location and the Coffs Harbour SLSC has indicated it doesn't have the capacity to extend its patrol program.
Some figures from the trial lifeguard patrol include:
- An average of nearly 18 preventive actions were conducted each day.
- Numerous first aid incidents were treated (26 actions, mostly minor).
- Assistance to Park Beach through responding to issues at the North Wall (a known hotspot for surf-related incidents due to strong rips) resulted in a substantial decrease in recorded incidents at this location.
- One rescue was made at Jetty Beach during the trial period.
- Total visitation (attendance) to Jetty Beach during patrol times over the trial period was 65,000 (estimated), averaging just over 2,000 per day.
Other matters up for discussion at this week's council meeting: