The Victorian Aquatic Industry made a splash at the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia (RLSSA) National Aquatic Industry Safety Awards recently, by winning three out of six possible awards.
YMCA Casey RACE in Cranbourne East, Leisurelink in Geelong and YMCA Victoria won respective awards, which were announced one-per-day between the 20th and 25th of August this year.
“We are very proud to have such a professional standard of operations across the Victorian Aquatic Industry,” says Andy Dennis, LSV General Manager: Pool Training and Public Safety. “Congratulations to our winners in their respective categories, recognising them as the best in their field. More broadly, the recognition of these innovative programs and procedures signals that Victoria is leading the way nationally in terms of aquatic facility management and safety. We’re particularly pleased that our Platinum Pools feature so prominently among the winners”
Leisurelink took out the Excellence in Staff Development award for their comprehensive lifeguard training program. Facility operators, The City of Greater Geelong – Swim Sport and Leisure, developed a range of interactive training sessions across their six facilities which mimicked real life scenarios to better educate facility lifeguards.
YMCA Victoria was awarded Excellence in Incident Management for the development of their centralised Incident Management System. The system effectively streamlines incident response and follow-up across all facilities, programs and sectors around the state to minimise the risk of incidents by identifying and remedying root causes.
YMCA Casey RACE won the Excellence in Public Education award for their promotion of safe hygiene practices within their community. The facility developed a range of education strategies to prevent faecal contamination incidents which caused pool closures, swimming lesson cancellations and exposed patrons and staff to health risks.
The awards are an initiative of the National Aquatic Industry Safety Committee to acknowledge the achievements of aquatic facilities and individuals towards improving health and safety outcomes. Between July 1 2005 and 30 June 2015, there were 293 drowning incidents in public and commercial pools across Australia. Thirty-six of these were fatal (12%).
“Drowning deaths and incidents at aquatic facilities are lower than other popular aquatic locations, however, we are continually working towards ways to reduce this to zero” says Craig Roberts, RLSSA National Manager – Operations.
“There are some great initiatives which are creating safer aquatic environments for children and adults across the country. The awards were established to recognise these efforts and inspire others to review and further develop their own health and safety policies and procedures.”