O’ahu lifeguard services may be expanded to all daylight hours
A bill to extend O’ahu lifeguard services to all daylight hours advanced in the Honolulu City Council Thursday.
The Committee on Public Safety and Welfare did approve an amendment to the bill to clarify the area lifeguards would patrol — from the shoreline to one mile out into the water. That is the area they say is most used for recreational purposes.
Bill 39 comes as Honolulu Ocean Safety says recently expanded hours at Hanauma Bay have been working. Lifeguards there are on the clock during daylight hours.
“A non-swimmer will drown within 15 seconds. Once they panic — in 15 seconds or less they’re going down, and so if that person’s going down in 15 seconds and we’re off the clock and we gotta call 911 for fire and EMS. That’s about a 5 minute response time give or take you know by the time then you gotta pump chest already,” said Waikiki lifeguard Jose Ilar Jr.
Right now, Honolulu Ocean Safety has eight mobile units. It says if it can double that, it would be able to provide daylight hour coverage across the island.