Joe's Job: Lifeguard

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by Joe Flanagan, 13News Now

WVEC.com

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 21 at 5:41 PM

VIRGINIA BEACH-- There are 49 lifeguard stands that line the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.  Every summer day, lifeguards are up there watching the waves and keeping everybody safe.   

Whether it's for real or taking part in physical training drills to stay in shape, lifeguards continually train and build teamwork.

"You're at the beach and you're working.  You get tan and you get to work out and it's a lot of fun," said lifeguard Mike Babineau.

Stand assignments were given out and Joe was given the Croatan lifeguard assignment.

Conditions that day were pretty bad for swimming. The red flags were up. There were 20 mph winds out of the north.

It didn't take long before the lifeguard at 21st Street had to warn swimmers about water conditions.

"When the lifeguards have an issue, medical, water rescue, anything like that, they are going to respond to them and take over the situation as quickly as they can and provide support to the lifeguards," said supervisor Tom Gill.  

When weather conditions get nasty the lifeguards have to be responsible.

"And just by the nature of where we are, we get a lot of people who aren't ocean people and they don't really know what they are in for and they get in over their heads, no pun intended," said supervisor Chris Doherty.

Lifeguards don't mess around when it comes to water safety. They all have amazing rescue stories.

"Two little girls got caught in a rip. Dad went out and tried to help them. He started drowning too. So, now there were three people caught in a rip, we had to call in some assistance. Got  'em out, so it was all good," Daugherty said.

As we approach Labor Day weekend Joe reminds us all to pay attention to these lifeguards.

How did Joe do as a lifeguard?  "The years of experience that you've had out here... I really think that you would lend a great deal of knowledge and a role model to all of our lifeguards and our supervisor corp," concluded Gill.    



 

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