Barely a week into the monsoon and there have been two drowning deaths at the beach and lifeguards are not willing to let any more people risk their lives.
The lifeguards at Juhu beach, including those attached to the fire brigade and private lifeguards, are not letting anyone venture into the sea. “The sea becomes very rough and one cannot take risks,” said Fire Officer Rajesh Shinde, who with his team and private lifeguards rescued around eight persons from drowning on Friday.
The Juhu beach, which is popular with the youth during rains, has three municipal corporation lifeguards, six lifeguards appointed by the Fire Brigade and 15 private lifeguards who keep a constant watch on the activities of revellers. The Juhu beach lifeguard association has around 250 lifeguards spread across beaches in the city. “The problem is that people do not take us seriously. In many cases, we have warned people from venturing deep into the sea but they continue to do so and then we have to rescue them,” said Station Officer (Fire Brigade) Somnath Jaybhay, who is in charge of the lifeguards at the beach. “Even if we ask them to keep out of the water during high tides they do not listen.”
Lifeguards attached to the Fire Brigade have been present at Juhu beach round the clock since June 15. “For the next there months our job is to keep visitors away from the sea,” Jaybhay said.