Moving into summer, Cape Town’s beach lifeguards are on duty to coincide with the school holiday and bookings for resorts will be open on 2 November 2020, with availability from 1 December.
- Lifeguards will be stationed at 26 bathing areas between 10:00 and 18:00 daily, until 12 April 2021.
Beachgoers are reminded to please only swim at beaches where lifeguards are present, and only in the areas demarcated for swimming, as indicated by the red and yellow flags.
‘Designated bathing areas help lifeguards keep an eye on everyone in the water, but these areas are also determined at the start of each shift, based on the tide and potential rip currents at the beach. It’s therefore imperative that bathers do their bit and adhere to the instructions from lifeguards.
‘Already this week we had an incident where one of our senior lifeguards was at Strand Beach for a training session, and managed to save two teenage boys who were caught in a rip current. Furthermore, if you are not a strong swimmer, stick to the shallow water, for your own safety and that of others, and parents please do not allow your children to visit the beach, tidal pool or local swimming pool unsupervised,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services and Health, Councillor Zahid Badroodien.
The beach deployment comes just a week after the City opened a number of swimming pools for the summer season.
COVID-19 health and safety protocols
In addition to water safety, the Recreation and Parks Department is also placing emphasis on COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
As such, swimming pools will only allow 50% of capacity, in line with national disaster management regulations. Patrons will also be required to undergo screening and sanitise before they are allowed entrance to the facility.
‘We realise that the restrictions could prove tricky, particularly on very warm days, but the City urges patrons to work with us and take cognisance of the bigger picture. We have moved to Alert Level 1 which has seen the return of many public amenities, but it is incumbent on every individual to continue aiding efforts to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 exposure and a potential second wave of infections in Cape Town. We cannot afford to be reckless and risk another lockdown,’ added Councillor Badroodien.
With many recreational facilities now available to the public, the City cautions visitors to keep safety top of mind, particularly as schools take a break and the weather warms up.
Bookings for resorts
Early booking is essential as resorts will also only be booked to a 50% capacity. Unfortunately, camping sites will be closed due to the health risks.
The booking of chalets between the period of 1-14 December 2020 will have no restrictions in terms of the minimum number of days that have to be reserved. Clients will however be required to book a chalet for a minimum of seven days during the peak period of 15 December 2020 to 15 January 2021. Please note that guests will not be allowed to have visitors at the resort.
‘Recent medical research of the COVID-19 virus indicated that the virus can remain viable for up to 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel. It is therefore recommended that a gap of at least five days is left between bookings of chalets. This would allow for sufficient cleaning time and ventilation of the chalet. While we encourage the public to take advantage of the opportunity to take a break at our beautiful and affordable resorts, safety remains our topmost priority. All non-essential items have been removed from the chalets. Guests are also required to bring their own bedding and towels as a precautionary measure,’ said Councillor Badroodien.
- Day picnic areas will be available between 10:00 and 18:00.
Staff will be on site at communal areas to attend to the continuous cleaning and sanitising however it is important the public takes responsibility for sanitising hands and the surfaces that they use regularly, especially when utilising play equipment, as it will not be practical for resort staff to sanitise equipment after each person, based on the predicted frequency of use.
Children are welcome to bring their own play equipment, except inflatable swimming pools which require large volumes of water to fill. Parents are also asked to assist in ensuring that items are safely stored away when not in use.
See also Cape Town Green Map