A vacation in Hawaii is carefree fun. You can spend your whole days in the hot sun, with sandy toes, fooling around on the beach and in the big waves. And you know why you can be so calm and not stress unnecessarily? Because the Hawaiian lifeguards are looking out for you. Even if you don’t notice, lifeguards in Hawaii are always watching. And they’re ready to save lives every day.
Profession: Hawaiian Lifeguard
Hawaii is one of the places in the world where lifeguarding is a year-round job because of the weather. At first glance, this job on the beach in a red swimsuit may seem like fun, just like in Baywatch (watch via Amazon Prime). But it actually requires a lot of hard work. Hawaiian lifeguards must constantly train their bodies in every way. To be flexible and strong. At the same time, they must be fast and work on their physical endurance. All this so they can fight the strong ocean waves that are their enemy when they need to help someone in need.
But physical abilities are not everything. What makes the job even more challenging is the need to be constantly alert. Lifeguards can’t afford to take their eyes off the sea for more than a few seconds. Which can be very mentally draining when you consider that they usually work eight hours straight seven days a week. When the surf is high, sometimes even longer.
Lifeguards on Hawaii’s Oahu
There are currently 41 active towers on Oahu under the direction of Ocean Safety (the primary emergency responders on the beach and nearby coastal waters of Oahu). They’re divided into five districts – The South Shore, The Windward Coast, The North Shore, The Leeward Coast and Hanauma Bay. In total, lifeguards here are responsible for 227 miles of coastline. Each of the towers usually has one captain, two or three lieutenants and between 21 to 60 Ocean Safety Officers or lifeguards. The entire Ocean Safety company has a total of 235 full-time lifeguards and about 37 contract lifeguards (a total of about 272 “guards”).
Despite the fact that there are those who keep an eye on us on the beaches in Hawaii, we should not forget about our own safety. Don’t overestimate your strength and act responsible so that lifeguard action is not necessary. In 2021 lifeguards (according to Emergency Services Honolulu sources) physically rescued nearly 2,500 people from the water just on the most visited island of Oahu!