150 RI lifeguards pass certification tests

NARRAGANSETT, R.I. (WPRI) — With Memorial Day Weekend approaching, lifeguards will soon be on duty full time.

Full-time guards will be on the beaches beginning Saturday.

Thursday, 150 lifeguards passed the initial certification test. With the running, swimming and rope-pulling, the test makes sure guards can perform rescues in all kinds of conditions – including rip currents.

“Every lifeguard has to take the surf test,” said Scarborough Beach lifeguard captain Joel Sienko. “And so today was the conditional surf test, and then we will [have] other surf tests later in the summer.”

Lifeguards who passed Thursday are good to go until August when they have to pass another test. The test was not administered Thursday because the water was too cold.

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) said candidates must hold valid cards in lifeguard training, first aid, and CPR and be at least 16 years of age. Applicants need to present a photo I.D. to verify their birth date and anyone under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Non-surf tests for lifeguard positions at pools and freshwater beaches will be given from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 15 and June 30 at the Prosser Grove Picnic Area at Burlingame State Park in Charlestown.

Surf tests for lifeguard positions at all types of swimming facilities will be given from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 16 at Scarborough State Beach in Narragansett.

A $10 fee for the certification card must be paid prior to the card being issued, according to the DEM.

In the event of inclement weather, call Burlingame State Park at (401) 322-8910 or Scarborough at (401) 789-2324 for cancellation information.

Visit the Division of Parks & Recreation’s website for more details.

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