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Seattle beaches: Invest in safety equipment




Re: “3 Seattle beaches won’t open due to lifeguard shortage” [May 19, Local News]:

When temperatures spiked recently, my kids and I beat the heat by hitting the beach. We are good swimmers but the water was chilly and the beach was unguarded, so we stayed where we could touch, and enjoyed the first swim of the summer.

We weren’t alone! While keeping an eye on my kids, I also saw young children splashing in the water, teenagers running on the dock and parents floating on inner tubes. I wondered what I would do if someone floated out too far or fell off the dock, as there was no life ring, throwable or even a rope to use to assist someone if the need arose.

We know swimming at guarded beaches is our safest bet, but with lifeguard hiring challenges and temperature records being shattered every year, that’s not the reality. It’s time for the city of Seattle to invest in safety equipment like life rings or the rescue tubes popularized on Hawaii’s public beaches for use at Seattle’s beaches and fishing docks 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Ann McNally, Seattle

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