Local lifeguards are celebrating a perfect season with zero fatalities across their six patrolled beaches in the Port Macquarie-Hastings area.
Port Macquarie-Hastings lifeguard services made 47 rescues, delivered first aid 151 times and made numerous preventative actions during the 2019 to 2020 season.
The group of 20 to 30 lifeguards also attended 12 emergency call outs to unpatrolled beaches and after hours incidents.
Port Macquarie-Hastings lifeguard supervisor James Turnham said he was very proud of the group's health and safety efforts this season outside their normal roles.
"We helped enforce the laws regarding social distancing on the beach and there were days at Town Beach that we did get close to the 100 person limit," he said.
"Initially there were a few people that did not want to listen but as people started to realise how serious it was, they started to listen and knew we were just doing our job.
"Every half hour or so we would make a general announcement over the PA so people knew they could have a quick swim and go, rather than hanging around."
Port Macquarie beaches received over 500,000 beach visitors this season, down by a quarter from the last. Town Beach was the most popular place to be with 277,000 people alone.
Lifeguards also conducted 49 school education presentations about beach safety for more than 4000 school students.
Lifeguards made 574 law enforcements regarding council rules and regulations including warning people about having dogs on the beach, glass bottles on the beach.
Surf Life Saving NSW recorded higher than average number of coastal drownings this season despite the effects of the NSW bushfire crisis and COVID-19 on beach attendance.
SLSNSW recorded 2,499 rescues, 6,023 first-aid treatments and 192,471 preventative actions across the state.
There were also 42 coastal drownings, above the 10-year average of 40 fatalities. Twenty-seven percent of NSW coastal drownings related to boating activities.
Surf Life Saving NSW chief executive Steven Pearce said volunteer surf lifesavers across NSW protect the Australian community in sometimes extraordinarily adverse conditions.
"This season surf lifesavers raised the bar in terms of their response in emergency and crisis situations," Mr Pearce said.
"Nothing could have prepared our members for the ferocity of the bushfires on the NSW Far South Coast. However, our members responded quickly and calmly during the crisis demonstrating how important our movement is in protecting lives and supporting communities.
"Their response was nothing short of exemplary and the positive feedback from communities impacted by the bushfires has been overwhelming."
"Tragically, total coastal drownings this season are up on the 10-year average. We can't stress enough the importance of taking responsibility for yourself when visiting the coast. Please stop and think before putting yourself, your friends and family and our volunteer emergency personnel in danger."