Surf Life Saving Queensland has been handed a funding boost by the Queensland Government just days out from the start of the busy summer school holiday period.
Premier Annastacia Palasczuk was down on the sand at Main Beach on Wednesday morning to announce an extra $150,000 in funding for SLSQ to supply equipment and deliver training and awareness programs.
The boost is on top of the three-year $17m funding package already provided by the state.
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“With the start of summer and the school holidays just around the corner, we can’t thank Surf Life Saving Queensland and its volunteers enough for patrolling our beaches,” the Premier said.
“We know that they need a little bit extra to make sure they can get their awareness campaign out in the summer period. It is absolutely vital that our families stay safe over the Christmas/New Year period and the school holidays.
SLSQ CEO Dave Whimpey said volunteer surf lifesavers and professional lifeguards combined to watch over and protect more than 21 million beachgoers last year.
“The lives of 3,894 beachgoers were saved through in-water rescues in 2018/19 alone, representing a 35 per cent increase compared to the previous year,” Mr Whimpey said.
“Our lifesavers and lifeguards also treated 65,133 injured people through first aid treatments, up 85 per cent.
“This week’s warm weather and that forecast over the coming months will no doubt result in big crowds flocking to our beaches. We’re extremely grateful to the Palaszczuk Government for this vital funding boost ahead of what is going to be a busy summer.”