Fingal’s lifeguards are pictured together on Portmarnock beach

This summer saw a decrease in accidents across Fingal’s beaches, thanks to the vigilance and experience of our heroic lifeguards.

According to this year’s Review of Lifeguard Service on Fingal’s 11 beaches, there were 4,800 individual incidents dealt with by the 35 lifeguards stationed across the county this summer.

None of these resulted in major injuries or incidents involving the public. In 2016, 404 accidents were prevented by on duty lifeguards and this year’s report found that this figure increased to 414.

Fingal County Council’s Water Safety Development Officer, John Hartnett credited the increase in accident prevention to the on-duty lifeguards’ experience and training.

He said: “Our lifeguards are extremely vigilant and have gathered enough knowledge through yearly training and past experience to pre-empt and prevent potential accidents.

“As was the case in previous years, this summer we were able to provide lifeguards with defibrillator training and workshops with the Royal National Lifesaving Institute and Dublin Fire Brigade, providing them with the essential skillset to prevent water related injuries.”

Further training included rescue boat training and an eight-week fitness programme to ensure each lifeguard was able to meet the physical requirements of their job.

Before being employed as a lifeguard, candidates must complete a pool fitness test conducted by the Dublin Area Committee of Irish Water Safety.

The report also highlights a growing issue around recruitment, as applications for lifeguard positions are in decline.