1902 there was no need for life savers because it was
illegal to swim at Australian beaches during daylight
hours. People could only swim in the early morning or
late evening. Men and women were not allowed to swim
together. This changed in 1902 when a man called William
Gocher went swimming during the day at Manly Beach in
Sydney. He was arrested, but he wasn't charged. Soon
others began swimming during the day and it became a
popular way to spend summer days.
water was sometimes dangerous. A group of volunteers
set up the first Surf Life Saving Club in the world
at Bondi Beach in Sydney in 1906. Today
there are many Surf Life Saving Clubs on beaches right
around the Australian coast. Life savers choose an area
of the beach where the water is relatively safe and
calm and they set up their flags. If people get into
trouble, life savers are ready to come to the rescue.
life savers often rush into the water to save people.
Some days they are very busy. For example, on February
6, 1938 the weather was hot and thousands of people
were enjoying the cool, refreshing water when suddenly
a series of large waves hit and swept hundreds of people
out to sea. In all 300 people were rescued including
several life savers!