Beachgoers will have a safer summer this year thanks to a $200,000 NSW government grant to replace oxygen resuscitation kits in every Surf Life Saving club.
All the four Bate Bay Surf Clubs and Garie SLSC will receive the units after the Minister for Health Brad Hazzard announced funding in February for 129 new OTK oxygen resuscitation kits.
Surf Life Saving NSW chief executive Steven Pearce thanked the NSW government, saying the kits will help the state's 20,000 active volunteer lifesavers provide the best standard of care to beachgoers.
"Our frontline volunteers are now recognised and skilled as first responders in the community and having the latest oxygen resuscitation kits at all of our clubs will ensure that the highest level of first aid and CPR are provided in an emergency," Mr Pearce said.
"More than 1000 surf lifesavers have now been trained in advanced resuscitation techniques and the new kits will provide them with the best equipment to provide emergency medical care."
Mr Hazzard says the new resuscitator kits, which have a heavy duty water resistant design and can be worn as a backpack, will improve rescue efforts.
"They will really help first responders provide rapid, high-quality first aid to people who get into trouble in the surf and get them safely to the care of NSW Ambulance paramedics," he said.
The units are used by NSW Ambulance and will replace aging or incompatible equipment being used by volunteer patrols on the beach.
Northern Beaches surf lifesaver and training officer Trae Hare-Boyd has been involved in several near drowning incidents and medical emergencies, both on and off patrol.
"Being a training officer and lifesaver on the beach, I understand the expense that comes with running a surf club and keeping equipment up-to-date. We receive the best training to save lives, but we also need to have the support of the best resuscitation equipment when it's needed in a critical incident."
In 2018/19, Surf Life Saving volunteers in NSW performed almost 4000 rescues and 7000 first aid and CPR treatments.