Lifesaving Society Reports Drowning Free Year on Prince Edward Island

Charlottetown, PE – With over eleven hundred kilometers of shoreline, water and swimming related activities are an important

part of our Island culture. During the summer months, our beaches and waterways are one of the most popular attractions for Islanders and visitors.

The Lifesaving Society PEI Branch is pleased to report that preliminary findings indicate that no drownings occurred in PEI during 2015. Final statistics are anticipated from the Office of the Chief Coroner, at a later date.

In 2014, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported the seriousness of drowning as a global public health issue:

  • Drowning claims an estimated 372,000 lives annually;
  • Drowning is the 3rd leading cause of unintentional injury/death;
  • Children, males and individuals with increased access to water are most at risk of drowning; and
  • Alcohol or drug use, near or in the water, is a significant factor associated with increased risk of drowning.

Adam Ross, President for the PEI Branch of Lifesaving Society reports that “In 2015, the Lifesaving Society certified 92 National Lifeguards in Prince Edward Island. A lifeguard’s primary role is to prevent incidents from happening. Lifeguards right across our province work on pool decks and on beaches preventing incidents from occurring, and this number (zero drownings in 2015) speaks to their dedication prevention efforts”.

Ross adds, “Teaching Islanders how to swim is a necessity since we live on an Island. Not only are the physical swimming skills important, but teaching Islanders to be WaterSmartTM is also a key objective of the Lifesaving Society. Education messages include the importance of children being within arms reach of an adult around water, swimming with a buddy, and wearing a PFD (Personal Floatation Device).”

Ross also reminds Islanders that drowning can occur at any time of the year, including during winter months. The Lifesaving Society cautions that any activities in on and around ice can be just as hazardous as swimming during the summer months:

“As we move into the winter months, there is still a risk of drowning present. Activities in, on and around ice can be just as high risk as swimming at a beach. Islanders should be sure to check the thickness of ice before venturing out. Snowmobiles require at least five inches of clear solid ice,” says Ross. “Islanders are encouraged to visit our website [www.lifesavingsocietypei.ca] for plenty of WaterSmartTM tips for being safe in, on and around water year round.”

Annually, 1,200,000 Canadians participate in the Lifesaving Society swimming, lifesaving, lifeguard, first aid and leadership training programs. As Canada’s lifeguarding experts, we set the standards for professional lifeguard training and certify Canada’s National Lifeguards.

Media Contact:

Adam Ross
President, Lifesaving Society (PEI Branch)
(902) 393-6747
info@lifesavingsocietypei.ca

Lifesaving Society Recognizes the Heroic-efforts of Three Islanders

Charlottetown, PE – The Lifesaving Society (PEI Branch) recently held their Honours & Awards Investiture to recognize three Islanders for their remarkable actions in rescuing Mr. Vance Easter of Unionvale, as well as thirteen volunteers of the Society who work diligently to accomplish the Society’s drowning prevention and injury prevention mandate on Prince Edward Island.

On September 24, 2011 while using an oxygen/propane torch, Vance Easter was victim to an explosion after a piece of slag blew off the equipment landed on the hoses of the torch. Vance was fully engulfed in flames from head to toe. His daughter, Jewel Easter, a former Lifeguard, called EMS and immediately went to help her father. Jewel quickly started to mist her father with the water hose. At the same time, Austin O’Meara and Glen Campbell were on their way home when they saw Jewel treating her father with the water hose and quickly sprang into action. Campbell immediately started to roll Mr. Easter on the ground in an attempt to smother the flames while O’Meara used the patio umbrella to extinguish the remaining flames. With Vance’s flames extinguished, the three rescuers continued to mist cool clean water on Vance until EMS arrived. Upon arrival at the Queen Elizabeth Health Science Centre Burn Unit in Halifax, Dr. Justin Paletz, learning Vance had been misted with clean, cool water until the arrival of the ambulance, responded, “They saved his life”.

Each of Vance’s rescuers received first aid training from the Lifesaving Society: Glen Campbell as a physical education teacher, Jewel Easter as a lifeguard and Scout, and Austin O’Meara as a boat captain. As a result of the right people being at the right place at the right time, a true miracle continues. Each rescuer was presented with the Honourary Associate Rescue Award, presented by the Honourable Frank Lewis, Lieutenant Governor of Prince Edward Island on behalf of the Society for their heroic efforts.

Also recognized at the ceremony were thirteen key volunteers of the Society who work throughout the province providing promoting & instructing programs focused on drowning prevention and injury prevention for all Islanders. These volunteers include:

Honourary Associate Appreciation Award: 
Shanahan Gardiner, Cardigan; Matthew Smith, Charlottetown; Frank Gaudet, Summerside; Jenilee Thompson, Summerside; Evan Rioux, Summerside; Mackenzie Stead, Charlottetown; Meaghan Lister, Montague; and Meghan Colvin, Charlottetown.

Commonwealth Certificate of Thanks:
Adam Ross, Stratford; and Ross Davies, Mount Stewart.

Commonwealth Service Cross:
Roger Hardy, Cavendish; and Angela Davies, Mount Stewart.

Commonwealth Bar to Service Medal:
James Sullivan, Stratford.

The Lifesaving Society of Canada is part an international non-profit movement that targets drowning and injury prevention related activities in Canada. The Society offers an array of training programs and public education campaigns to reduce the risk of injuries in, on and around water. Most notably, the Lifesaving Society is the steward of the National Lifeguard program, the standard for Lifeguarding in Canada.

Members of the public are welcome and encouraged to nominate Islanders for their heroic efforts in saving the life of another individual by contacting the Lifesaving Society of Prince Edward Island at (902) 368-7757 or info@lifesavingsocietypei.ca.

What’s the Prereq?

Wondering what the prerequisite is to a Lifesaving Society training program?  We now have a simplified page for award prerequisites available to our members!  Take a look at the Award Prerequisites At-A-Glance information below:

Award Prerequisites At A Glance

Proof of First Aid Prerequisite

The Lifesaving Society accepts Emergency First Aid (EFA) and Standard First Aid (SFA) certificates as prerequisites only from the following agencies:

  • Lifesaving Society
  • Canadian Red Cross
  • St. John Ambulance
  • Canadian Ski Patrol
  • CPR First Aid & Safety Services

When a first aid certification from an agency other than the Lifesaving Society is used as a prerequisite for a Lifesaving Society award, a photocopy of the certification card must accompany the Lifesaving Society test sheets. The Society will not issue awards if this proof of prerequisite is missing.

Affiliates: please notify Bronze Cross and National Lifeguard candidates of this prerequisite requirement in your promotional materials and at registration locations. Before you submit test sheets to the Society, please attach copies of prerequisites when necessary.

Other Prerequisite Policies

  • Proof of prerequisites must be available to the examiner.
  • Candidates must attain the age prerequisite by the end of the course or the examination date.
  • Prerequisite awards must be earned prior to the start date of the course to which they apply. (Awards taken concurrently will be deemed to have been earned in the correct order.)
  • Prerequisite awards need not be current.

LIFESAVING AWARD PREREQUISITES

Junior Lifeguard Club → Canadian Swim to Survive standard
Rookie, Ranger, or Star Patrol → None
Bronze Star → None, Swim Patrol recommended
Bronze Medallion → Minimum 13 years of age or Bronze Star
Bronze Cross → Bronze Medallion, Standard or Emergency First Aid certification from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol
Distinction → Bronze Cross
Boat Rescue → Basic swimming and craft-handling ability
Lifesaving Fitness → 30 years of age or less, or medical approval

FIRST AID AWARD PREREQUISITES

Basic First Aid → None
Emergency First Aid (EFA) → None
Standard First Aid (SFA) → None
CPR A, B or C → None
CPR-HCP → None
Automated External Defibrillation (AED) → CPR
Airway Management → Standard First Aid from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol
Anaphylaxis Rescuer → None

LIFEGUARDING AWARD PREREQUISITES

Patrol Rider → National Lifeguard (Waterfront or Surf recommended), Pleasure Craft Operator (PCO) Card
Wading Pool Attendant → Minimum 14 years of age, Standard or Emergency First Aid certification from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol
National Lifeguard Pool → Minimum 16 years of age, Bronze Cross, Standard First Aid from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol
National Lifeguard Waterfront → Minimum 16 years of age, Bronze Cross, Standard First Aid certification from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol
National Lifeguard Waterpark → National Lifeguard Pool
National Lifeguard Surf → National Lifeguard Waterfront

SWIM FOR LIFE AWARD PREREQUISITES

Parent & Tot 1 → None, children 4-12 months
Parent & Tot 2 → None, children 12-24 months
Parent & Tot 3 → None, children 2-3 years
Preschool 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 → None, children 3-5 years
Swimmer 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 → None, children 5 years and up
Adult 1, 2, 3 → None, adults all ages
Fitness Swimmer → None, all ages

SAFETY MANAGEMENT AWARD PREREQUISITES

Aquatic Supervisor → National Lifeguard or Lifesaving Instructor or Swim Instructor certification; and 100 hours experience as a lifeguard and/or instructor
Aquatic Management Training → None
Aquatic Safety Inspector → None
Aquatic Safety Auditor → Aquatic Safety Inspector
Pool Operator Level 1 → None
Pool Operator Level 2 → Pool Operator Level 1 or equivalent
SEE Auditor → National Lifeguard and minimum 100 hours lifeguarding experience, or National Lifeguard Examiner, or Aquatic Supervisor or Aquatic Management Training
Aquatic Safety Chief Auditor → Aquatic Safety Auditor

LIFESAVING SPORT PREREQUISITES

Sport Fundamentals (Level 1-5) → None. Minimum 8 years of age and Swimmer 3 recommended
Community Official → Minimum 13 years of age
Pool Official → Minimum 16 years of age, Community Official, experience
Open Water Official → Minimum 16 years of age, Community Official, experience
Emergency Response Official → Minimum 16 years of age, Community Official, experience

LEADERSHIP AWARD PREREQUISITES

Assistant Instructor → Minimum 14 years of age, Bronze Cross
Swim Instructor → Minimum 16 years of age, Bronze Cross
Lifesaving Instructor → Minimum 16 years of age, Bronze Cross
Advanced Instructor → Lifesaving Instructor
National Lifeguard Instructor → National Lifeguard, Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor
Standard First Aid Instructor → Standard First Aid certification (from one of: Lifesaving Society, St. John Ambulance, Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Ski Patrol), Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor (or SFA and Core Instructor)
Health Care Provider Instructor → Lifesaving Society CPR-HCP, Lifesaving Society Standard First Aid Instructor
Airway Managment Instructor → Lifesaving Society Airway Management, Lifesaving Society Standard First Aid Instructor
Lifesaving Sport Coach Level 1 → Lifesaving Instructor
Officials Instructor → Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor, Pool or Open Water or Emergency Response Official, experience
Aquatic Supervisor Instructor → Aquatic Supervisor, Lifesaving Instructor,

Advanced Instructor

Aquatic Safety Inspector Instructor → Aquatic Safety Inspector, Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor
Aquatic Safety Auditor Instructor → Aquatic Safety Auditor, Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor
Aquatic Safety Chief Auditor Instructor → Aquatic Safety Auditor Instructor
SEE Auditor Instructor → SEE Auditor, National Lifeguard Examiner or Aquatic Supervisor Instructor
Pool Operator Instructor → Lifesaving Society Pool Operator Level 2, Lifesaving Instructor, Advanced Instructor
Examiner → Experienced Instructor in the relevant program area(s)
Instructor Trainer → Experienced Examiner in the relevant program area(s)

Lifesaving Sport Coach Trainer → Examiner, Lifesaving Sport Coach, Coach experience
Lifesaving Sport Official Trainer → Examiner, Officials Instructor
Provincial Trainer → Experienced Instructor Trainer

Leadership Recertification System Launched

To assist leadership instructors, examiners and instructor trainers recertify qualifications, the Lifesaving Society PEI Branch has launched the Leadership Recertification System.

To maintain “current”, Instructors, Examiners and Trainers must recertify their award(s) within 24 months of the certification or last recertification date.

The Lifesaving Society’s Credit System recognizes individual needs and interests by encouraging leadership personnel to learn and improve through continuing education and professional development:

For Instructors, earn 3 credits during the 2-year certification period by participating in courses, clinics and training programs identified on the Lifesaving Society Credit List

For Instructor Trainers, earn 5 credits during the 2-year certification period by participating in courses, clinics and training programs identified on the Lifesaving Society Credit List.

Record your credits on the Credit Card dated and signed by the various course evaluators.

Mail the completed Credit Card with the recertification fee to the Society’s office. We send you back a renewed certification card (valid for another 2 years) together with a blank Credit Card and Credit List.  You can also email your Credit Card (scanned copy with payment information completed) to recert@lifesavingsocietypei.ca

Leadership awards recertified at different times are subject to a recertification fee each time. Recertifying all your leadership certifications at the same time reduces your cost.

There is no fee to renew an Examiner appointment, provided you renew it at the same time as your other leadership certifications.

For more information on the Leadership Recertification System please contact recert@lifesavingsocietypei.ca