3 Must Follow Rules Every Lifeguard Should Know
Lifeguards are known for blowing their whistles and reinforcing the pool or beach rules, but do you realize they have their own set of rules to follow? That’s right. Lifeguards are like aquatic police officers, so just because they lay down the law doesn’t mean they can get away with any funny business on their own. Lifeguard rules are different at every facility or beach, but there are 3 rules that every lifeguard must follow regardless of where they work. If you didn’t know these already, now is a great time to learn!
When you’re on duty, you’re 100% on duty.
Every lifeguard makes a promise when clocking in for a shift. You’re there to keep everyone as safe as possible. People are relying on you —surfers, little tikes, parents, the older folks, the list goes on. You can’t view your shift the way some people view their work hours. You’re not just getting paid to sit in a chair —you’re getting paid to save lives.
There are no exceptions to the rules.
It doesn’t matter if your friend is at the beach while you’re on duty, and it doesn’t matter if a patron is complaining about the rules. A facility or beach’s set of rules is developed with safety at the forefront, so you can’t tweak these according to the patrons’ requests. You may have to have some uncomfortable conversations if patrons complain or put up a fight about the rules, but it’s your job to stick to them and reinforce them. Be sure to verbalize that the rules are there to promote safety and that it’s in the patrons’ best interests that they are followed.
Everyone should be in your eyesight at all times.
People will move around and come and go, but your job is to remain alert and make sure all pool or beach visitors are in your sight. The minute a patron crosses into your territory, it’s your responsibility to keep an eye out for that person. It’s no small feat —there are lots of people on the beach and at the pool, but it’s part of your job. If you start to feel overwhelmed, talk to a adviser or manager to get tips on how to better watch all of the patrons at once.
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