County hiring beach lifeguards

The Cameron County Beach Patrol will employ up to 45 temporary lifeguards during the summer at South Padre Island.

The increase in lifeguards will accommodate the influx of visitors that the coastal parks and beach accesses on South Padre Island usually experience in what Parks Director Joe Vega calls the peak season.

“That’s the number we feel can cover all of our lifeguard stands,” Vega said. “It’s important to make sure they’re covered adequately.”

The county has 12 lifeguard towers at the Island.

Lifeguards will work long shifts throughout the summer to ensure the beach is properly staffed from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Some lifeguards will be out on patrol. Others will cover the stands and keep an eye out for when people go too far out into the water. They will also have first-aid kits on hand for cuts and jellyfish stings, Vega said.

“They go through extensive training, and all have to be certified. They assist swimmers in distress and educate parents to make sure they stay close to their kids and keep them from going in more than knee high,” Vega said.

The majority of the lifeguards will begin working after May 15. The county has already hired 25.

“If anybody is interested, please apply. We’re always looking for good candidates,” Vega said.

The program has been successful in the past, and many of the lifeguards that work during the summer season come back the following year, Vega said.

The beach patrol can be reached at (956)772-9222 or at BeachPatrol@co.cameron.tx.us.