Our lifeguards

professional lifeguards

Waverley Council employs professional lifeguards to protect visitors to Bondi, Bronte and Tamarama beaches. These professional lifeguards wear blue uniforms and work 365 days a year.

The term lifeguard has been used since about 1994, prior to that the staff who patrolled the beach were known as beach inspectors. The first beach inspector, Dennis 'Dinny' Brown was appointed in 1913 to look after the swimmers at Bondi Beach.

What Qualifications do Lifeguards have?

Anyone wishing to be a lifeguard should be proficient in surf lifesaving or professional lifeguarding with experience and knowledge of open ocean surf beaches in a wide range of conditions. In addition to having completed the "Defibrillator" and "Necksafe" courses it is necessary for applicants to hold:

  1. Current Class 1A Driver's Licence
  2. First Aid Certificate
  3. Advanced Resuscitation Certificate
  4. P.W.C Waterways Licence

Applicants must also have a high level of physical fitness and will be required to undergo a physical test comprising an 800m pool swim to be completed under 13 minutes; a 300m – 500m ocean surf swim, followed by a 300m – 500m ocean surf rescue board paddle, followed by a 300m – 400m beach run, followed by a 300m – 500m ocean surf swim, 300m – 500m ocean surf rescue board paddle, and concluding with a 300m – 400m beach run and simulated board and tube rescues, all within a specified time period (distance subject to conditions).

For more information, please visit our Professional Lifeguard recruitment page.

What do Lifeguards do?

They put out the flags and rescue equipment, patrol designated public surf bathing and surfcraft areas as well as closely monitor dangerous swimming areas. When necessary they perform rescues and resuscitations. When there are strong rips and a big crowd they may perform over 100 rescues a day.

In addition to the front line work they provide information on surf and beach conditions to the public and give beach and water safety talks to schools and community groups.

Seasonal Lifeguards are employed for the full swimming season on a 38-hour week on a 7 day rotating roster. Casual lifeguards are engaged as required. The casuals have to meet the same requirements as the seasonal lifeguards.

When are the beaches patrolled?

Bondi and Bronte beaches are patrolled 365 days a year. Tamarama Beach is not patrolled in the winter time.

Lifeguard hours of operation

Bronte Beach and Bondi Beach

  • Day light saving: 6am - 7pm
  • Non day light saving: 7am - 5pm

Tamarama Beach

  • day light saving: 6am - 7pm
  • Non day light saving: 7am - 5pm
  • July and August: beach closed no lifeguards on duty

Contact information

General Beach Queries (Lost Property, Beach conditions, Tourist information)
Customer Service 9083 8000 or email info@waverley.nsw.gov.au

Media Queries
Media Officer 0416 075 532 or email media@waverley.nsw.gov.au

Dial Triple Zero (000) to report a life threatening situation.


The volunteer lifesavers wear red and yellow uniforms and assist the lifeguards on the beach at weekends and on public holidays during the summer period. There are four surf life saving clubs at Council’s three beaches: Bronte Surf Life Saving Club, Tamarama Surf Life Saving Club, and two at Bondi Beach - the Bondi Surf Bathers' Life Saving Club and the North Bondi Surf Life Saving Club. These clubs were founded in the early 1900's.

Need more information? Contact

Customer Service Centre
Phone: 9083 8000
Email: info@waverley.nsw.gov.au

Beach Wheelchairs booking

Phone: 9083 8400