Friday 22nd October 2021 – XÀBIA AL DÍA with Mike Smith
The beach surveillance and lifeguard service provided by the Cruz Roja carried some 4,485 assists and 157 rescues, according to an end-of-season report provided by the Department of Beaches in Xàbia. The rescues included helping swimmers in trouble but especially those using kayaks and boats along the coast of the municipality.
The 50 personnel deployed to provide the service were distributed on the beaches of La Grava, Benissero, L’Arenal, Portitxol-Barraca and La Granadella, supported by two rescue boats, a rescue jetski, two ambulances and a rapid response vehicle based in the Arenal beach zone.
The report said that the service has faced a “very active” season in which there have been numerous rescues of members of the public in areas that are not specifically covered by a permanent surveillance service, highlighting the fishing area of Llop Marí and the cove of El Caló. First responders have treated people injured due to falls, slips and jumps from rocks as well as inexperienced kayakers.
The Cruz Roja service has also provided assistance to vessels at risk of sinking, carrying out investigations as well as collaborations with Salvamiento Marítimo – the Spanish lifeboat service – in towing tasks in minor incidents.
Other responsibilities on the beaches during the summer have been dealing with lost people, from young children to the elderly, as well as 110 interventions by ambulance, of which 68 were transferred to a hospital as well as the assisted bathing access point in the Arenal.
The current season also included a special response plan in line with the health protocols imposed due by the current pandemic, which were implemented without significant incidents. A specialised beach team joined the Cruz Roja to respond to emergencies and to reinforce and support the heath and rescue needs during the months of high occupancy.
Councillor Toni Miragall (Beaches) congratulated the Cruz Roja service for its professional response during a complicated season which saw a large influx of users on the beaches and in the waters along the coast.
He highlighted the great vocation for improvement that the team has, in continuous training and always aware of the day-to-day requirements to detect new needs and propose improvements to the service. In this sense, professionals have stressed the change experienced with the increase of new sports and recreational activities in unsupervised points, which has led them to specialize in water rescue in rocky and difficult to access areas such as the cliffs of Xàbia.
The Cruz Roja wanted to thank all the team of professionals who have made possible the development of the service successfully and the people who visit our beaches every day and collaborate complying with the prevention measures, exercising with the best example; as well as the good disposition and proximity of all the police forces, health professional, fire service, Protección Civil and the mass media.