HONOLULU (KHON2) — Gov. David Ige proclaimed this year’s Hawai’i Beach Safety Week will be observed from Sunday, Aug. 22, to Saturday, Aug. 28.

Ocean-related activities, demonstrations and presentations are scheduled throughout the week, officials reported.

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“With the return of visitors and more residents going to the beach, lifeguards and ocean safety professionals have never been more relevant,” said John Titchen, Honolulu Ocean Safety chief and Drowning Advisory committee member. “On all islands, lifeguards are needed more than ever. From swimmers to surfers to stand-up paddlers to kayakers to foilers to fishers to bodysurfers, and everything in between, it’s busy out there.”

Hawai’i Beach Safety Week 2021 activities:

  • Monday, Aug. 23 — Waikiki: Near-shore rescue demonstrations by City and County of Honolulu lifeguards; contact Chief John Titchen at (808) 273-7862.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 24 — Kahului Airport: Tips on Public Rescue Tube Use by Maui Ocean Safety; contact Chief Jeff Giesea at (808) 463-3850.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 25 — Update and insights from a firefighter who suffered a spinal cord injury while bodysurfing at Sandy Beach on O‘ahu; contact Chelsea Ko at (808) 733-2148.
  • Thursday, Aug. 26 — Outreach to Hawai‘i Island keiki on ocean safety basics: Hawai‘i Ocean Safety; contact Chief Darwin Okinaka at (808) 557-4209.
  • Friday, Aug. 27 — Rescue craft and response operations training with Kaua‘i Ocean Safety Bureau and Kaua‘i Fire Department; contact Kalani Vierra at (808) 241-4964.

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The Hawai’i Department of Health reported that ocean drowning is the leading cause of fatal injuries for visitors and the sixth for residents. According to officials, there have been 27 fatal drownings as of June 2021.