Gold Coast lifeguards preparing for ‘perfect storm’ conditions

Gold Coast Lifeguards are preparing for a dangerous week on the Gold Coast, as Cyclone Oma starts thrashing the coastline.

It comes as the system continues its approach towards South-East Queensland, bringing large swells and winds over the coming days.

The Weather Bureau has already put in place a hazardous surf warning for Gold Coast waters, with strong wind alerts likely on their way as well.


The combination of a king tide and large swell conditions are creating a ‘perfect storm’ effect, according to Acting Chief Lifeguard Chris Maynard.

“It’s unfortunate, the timing of it all, but it’s very dangerous when you get that king tide with large swells that hit the coast.

“If you’re visiting on the beaches and getting close to the foreshore, it becomes quite hazardous due to the strong tidal surges with the swell,” Mr Maynard said.

With 10-12 foot waves predicted, lifeguards are expecting surfers to take advantage of the waves.

Though Mr Maynard put a warning to all beach goers, no matter their experience, to exercise caution if they’re thinking about going into the water or even just sitting on the beach.

“If you are heading to the beaches, have a look at the swell, and even if you’re an experienced surfer just be careful.

“Especially those open beaches from Miami right through to the Seaway, the beaches are in good conditions, they’re pretty flat, so there’s going to be a lot of water running up into the vegetation,” Mr Maynard said.

“In the morning, it’s the key time with the combination of the high tide and the swell, so those times will be quite dangerous, and there’s much beach with the size of the swell that we are going to get.

“We’re advising people not to actually stand on the sand and get close to the waters edge.

“If you’re going to have a look, stay up on the footpath,” Mr Maynard said.

Earlier today, Mayor Tom Tate urged all Gold Coast residents to prepare for the cyclonic conditions coming our way.

“People out there get ready, make sure you’ve got radio with battery and a first aid kit and if you’re not sure how to get ready, get onto council website there’s a list for how you can get ready,” he said.

Mayor Tate also said that Council is fully prepared to put a disaster plan into motion, if Cyclone Oma continues to track towards the Gold Coast.

“We have prepared our heavy vehicle to be on the ready at our depo and should swell hit us hard, we will be able to manage.

“It will reduce scarping, the other part we have to maintain is at Narrowneck, the first defence will be there because we’ve opened some remedial work.

“Reflecting on what we’ve done with our beach nourishment over the past two years, including sand pumping, rainbowing onto the beach, and stockpiling 3 million cubic metres on the northern part of our beach, i believe we are well prepared,” Mayor Tate said.