October 25 - 31, 2015: Issue 237

 Warriewood and Avalon Beach SLSC Members Receive Meritorious Awards At SLSA Awards of Excellence 2015


Adriaan van der Wallen - Nippers Age Manager - at Avalon Beach SLSC. 

SLSA: October 24, 2015

A Scottish man who migrated to Australia with a fear of the ocean is the national Lifesaver of the Year for 2015.
57 year-old Billy Jackson from Brighton Surf Life Saving Club in South Australia took out the DHL Lifesaver of the Year award at the annual Surf Life Saving Australia National Awards of Excellence in Sydney.

He is the first South Australian winner of the DHL Lifesaver of the Year award since 2008.

Mr Jackson moved to Australia more than 20 years ago and quickly joined the Surf Life Saving ranks on arrival. It helped him overcome his fear of the ocean after learning to swim in a river that flows through the south-west of Scotland in a small town near Kilmarnock.
He has gone on to become a well-respected member and mentor at Brighton SLSC, awarded life membership of the club earlier this year and has played a leading role in the establishment of South Australia’s newest club Goolwa SLSC.

In 2014/15, he also clocked a staggering 215 hours of volunteer patrols for his local club.

On a night where awards were sent to all corners of the country, Queensland’s Mermaid Beach SLSC won the DHL Club of the Year after being a nominee in the same category last year.

Judges applauded the club’s long-term plan for strategic sustainability and growth and the positive connection to the local community.
Mermaid Beach has continued to grow in membership and boasts more than 850 members, with a strong Nippers base.
Queensland’s Warick Redwood took out the highly prestigious DHL Volunteer of the Year award.

The Sunshine Beach SLSC member has been a leader in introducing innovative programs which have resulted in a boost in youth membership by 60 per cent. He has also been a leader in training patrolling members at the club.

The DHL Lifeguard of the Year award was won by Luke Plant from Victoria.

The Australian Lifeguard Services employee has progressed his career steadily over his six years as a professional lifeguard and was this year heavily involved in the development of a rookie program in Victoria.

Surf Life Saving Australia welcomed two new life members, with Burning Palms SLSC stalwart Peter Pearce rewarded for his 49 years of service at all levels of the movement.

Broadbeach SLSC’s Mark Fife was also made a Life Member, on a history-making night for the SLSA Chair of Lifesaving. He was also inducted into the SLSA Hall of Fame, after being the national Lifesaver of the Year and Volunteer of the Year in previous years. He is the first person to have ever received all four awards.

Sporting stars Alison O’Toole and Lachlan Tame were also inducted into the SLSA Hall of Fame for their achievements at national surf sports events.

Among a host of awards presented on the night, Liz Pluimers took out the Surf Sports Athlete of the Year award following a history-making season in which she became the first person to win the triple-crown – the Coolangatta Gold, the Nutri-Grain Series and the Australian Ironwoman Championship in the same season.

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of meritorious awards to 15 noteworthy lifesavers for outstanding rescues performed throughout the season.

The full list of winners is:
Surf Sport Coach of the Year                             Andrew Chandler    Seacliff SLSC, SA
Surf Sport Official of the Year                            Carol Gibbs    Trigg Island SLSC, WA
Surf Sport Youth Athlete of the Year                  Lizzie Welborn    North Bondi, NSW
Surf Sport Athlete of the Year                            Liz Pluimers    North Burleigh SLSC, QLD
Trainer of the Year                                              Belinda Kuster    Scarboro SLSC, WA
Assessor of the Year                                          Katrina Antony    Portland SLSC, VIC
Community Education Program of the Year    Bellambi SLSC NSW    
DHL Lifeguard of the Year                                 Luke Plant    ALS Victoria
DHL Lifesaver of the Year                                 William Jackson    Brighton SLSC, SA
DHL Volunteer of the Year                                 Warick Redwood    Sunshine Beach SLSC, QLD
DHL Club of the Year                                         Mermaid Beach    
Meritorious Award Winners:
Australian Lifeguard Service WA
Elena Damianopoulos – Floreat SLSC, WA
Richard Garnsey – Cronulla SLSC, NSW
Avan Christie – Evans Head/ Casino SLSC, NSW
Wesfarmers Jet Rescue Team – Albany SLSC, WA
North Bondi SLSC – NSW
Redhead SLSC – NSW
Peter McNally, Jason, O’Donnell & Paul Young – Macksville-Scotts Head SLSC, NSW
Desleigh Jones – Dicky Beach SLSC, QLD
Bruce Kelly – North Narrabeen SLSC, NSW
Craig Zulian – Towradgi SLSC, NSW
Adriaan van der Wallen – Avalon SLSC, NSW
Emma Jackson – Kurrawa SLSC, QLD
Graham & Lucas Toms – South Maroubra SLSC, NSW
Kerry McEwan, Kate Munro & Donna Wishart – Avalon SLSC, NSW
Bev Tilbury, Russell Lamb & Jen Spencer – Warriewood SLSC, NSW
SLSA Hall of Fame Inductees:
Mark Fife OAM - QLD
South Port SLSC March Past Team - SA
Lachlan Tame – NSW
Alison O’Toole – WA
SLSA Life Members:
Mark Fife OAM - QLD
Peter Pearce - NSW

Avalon Beach SLSC Nipper Age Manager Adriaan Van Der Wallen receives Meritorious Award individual Certificate of Merit for an outstanding rescue of 14 people. Congratulations Adriaan. You can read about Adriaans rescue of 14 people at Forster in full in his Profile

Saving Lives On The Road 


Adriaan Van Der Wallen at Avalon Beach SLSC  - Photo courtesy Christine Hopton.

"SAVING LIVES on the road....Adriaan Van Der Wallen was on holiday returning from a family surf trip at Boomerang Beach and stopped at Foster unintentionally and went for a quick dip. Adriaan had only just hit the beach when he saw a surge come in immediately take 20 people at least 10 metres off shore and it was immediately noticeable that they were unable to swim. 

Adriaan raced in with a small foam nipper board with 6 handles, needing to pull some of the children's hair to grab them as they sank. All up four children and five adults holding the board. Two other adults were over to the left and three were holding onto each other to the right. Managing to get to the shore relief swept the beach. We are positive that if Adriaan had not been on the beach that day that a tragedy would have been all over national news."

Adriaan is a great waterman -  a Nipper Age manager at Avalon Beach SLSC and a Long Service member of Palm Beach SLSC - he has competed for both clubs. 

Donna Wishart, Bev Tilbury, Kerry McEwan along with Russell Lamb from Warriewood also receive Meritorious Award Group Certificate of Merit with Bronze Insert. Their rescue saved a severely injured man - congratulations girls. 

Pictures by Christine Hopton

  Warriewood and Avalon Beach Win NSW Rescue of the Month - May/June 2015

 Above: Avalon Beach and Warriewood surf life savers after the rescue

 Warriewood and Avalon Beach Win NSW Rescue of the Month

Friday 17th of July 2015 - SLS NSW

Warriewood and Avalon Beach lifesavers have been awarded the NSW Rescue of the Month for May/June after rescuing a rock fisherman who fell five metres onto rocks at Warriewood Beach on 27 June 2015.

The Avalon Beach Masters Women surfboat crew with Russell Lamb from Warriewood as sweep, were rowing off Warriewood at 7.20am on Saturday 27 June when they saw a rock fisherman fall more than five metres onto rocks and roll partly into the water.
When he wasn't moving, Bev Tilbury and Kate Munro jumped into the water and swam over to the rock platform with a rescue tube. The remaining two rowers, Kerry McEwan and Donna Wishart along with the sweep, Russell Lamb headed back to the beach to raise the alarm and launch the IRB.

Police and Ambulance were called and the IRB with Russell and Kerry sped back out around the headland with first aid, spinal board and oxygen gear and Kerry left the IRB to swim over to the rocks to assist. Warriewood Club Captain Jen Spencer paddled a rescue board around to the accident site to assist, while Donna manned the radio, coordinating comms with the State Operations Centre, emergency services and the IRB.

The four lifesavers secured the man onto a spinal board, stabilised the patient and waited for help as it was thought too risky to try to get the man into the IRB with possible spinal injuries.

He was in a lot of pain, groaning and shivering from shock. It was impossible to walk him out either because they were trapped under a rocky overhang.

For more than an hour the members tried to comfort and reassure the patient until the Ambulance helicopter arrived and a paramedic was winched onto the rocks, secured the patient in a stretcher then winched him aboard the aircraft.

The man was wearing a lifejacket, but was extremely lucky the crew were out training and were able to reach him so quickly. He sustained fractures to his wrists, pelvis and scapula and received surgery the next day.

The rowers sustained minor cuts and bruises getting onto the rock platform and two of the lifesavers were also suffering from mild hypothermia as they were clad only in swimmers and light tops for the entire length of the rescue operation.

The rescue was a good example of a combined effort from lifesavers from two clubs and the rock fisherman was extremely lucky the surfboat crew was out training and able to respond.

The SLSNSW Rescue of the Month aims to recognise excellence in lifesaving. Each month a ‘Rescue of the Month’ is awarded at State level for the most outstanding rescue performance for that period. Monthly winners have the chance to win the Australian Rescue of the Month and become finalists for the SLSNSW Rescue of the Year which is presented at the annual Awards of Excellence.

For official citations and past recipients please visit the Rescue of the Month Recognition Page.