December 1 marked the beginning of summer and was also National Lifesavers Day in Australia. To emphasise the importance of the contribution of surf lifesavers, Surf Life Saving Australia released the National Surf Safety Report, supported by local media event by many of the state centers.
The report provides an analysis of data for the 2002-2003 season on the following topics: Rescues, Preventative Actions, First Aid, Drownings, Drowning Factors, Location, Activity and Injury Mechanism, Surf Safety Tips.
60 people drowned along the Australian coastline between 1 July 2002 and 30 June 2003, down from 61 in the previous year, and below the five-year average of 64.
The largest number of drownings occurred for males in the 20 to 29 year age bracket, accounting for 28% of all drownings. Males aged 50 to 59 accounted for 22%.
A large amount of positive media was achieved, demonstrating the tremendous amount of goodwill in the community for the work of lifesavers.