Every year when the season slows down we review our season to see how we did. I enjoy the process because it helps show how the beach patrol is an entire safety and educational network, as opposed to merely the lifeguard service for the city of Galveston. The process also helps target areas we can improve on next season. Here are a few of the highlights:

• Maintained and posted annual statistics with the United States Lifesaving Association. We use these to target areas for improvement and to help show what we do. This year we performed 124,556 preventions, 123 rescues, 160 lost children reunited with families, 1,480 medical responses and 2,842 enforcement actions

• Maintained 32 lifeguard towers on beach for the seven month season.

• Daily patrols vehicles scheduled on the West End from Memorial Day to Labor Day. We had staffing issues this year that were a challenge, but we hit this goal for the most part.

• Patrolled the San Luis Pass with a UTV on weekends from Memorial Day to Labor Day weekends. They focused on enforcement of our “no swimming” ordinance in the dangerous areas.

• Revised policy and procedure manual, a task we do each season to keep us current, efficient, and focused.

• More than doubled last year’s goal by providing talks to 25,900 kids in our School Water Safety Outreach program.

• Facilitated the development, training and growth of Texas coastal lifeguarding programs by providing a train-the-trainer course to 12 beach patrol managers from South Padre, Cameron County, Corpus Christi and Port Aransas beach patrols.

• At least one beach patrol representative served the community on Galveston College L.E. Academy board, Better Parks of Galveston, Children’s Museum and the Galveston Marine Response team.

• Provided a Basic Water Rescue course for 12 surf instructors and all of the Galveston Fire Department.

• Increase social media footprint. We increased followers from 4,568 to 6,167 from 2016 to 2017, a 26 percent increase.

• Added movie promo and mass text campaigns to our recruiting efforts.

• Included tourist ambassador training in all three of our lifeguard academies.

• Maintained prominent positions in national and international organizations (Yours truly, president of the United States Lifesaving Association, secretary general of the Americas Region of International Lifesaving Association; Capt. Tony Pryor, chair of USLA certification committee, president of Gulf Region of USLA), and Lt. Kara Harrison on USLA Textbook Revision Committee and Vice Chair of Heroic Acts Committee.

• Conducted an annual review of the park board disaster response plan.

• Initiate a community based education program called Wave Watchers; 11 trained, over 600 hours of service completed by volunteers.

• Helped facilitate the Senior Beach Walk program. Seniors completed more than 20 walks averaging about seven individuals per walk.

• Junior lifeguard program — increased participants from 104 to 114, an 8 percent increase.

• Emergency response 24/7/365 and vehicle patrols 10 months out of the year.

• Sent lifeguard and junior guard team of 22 to nationals. Juniors had 15 top 12 finishes. Lifeguard team had 15 top 10 finishes and won 10 medals.

• Hurricane Harvey — four teams helped make 127 urban flood rescues.

Peter Davis is chief of the Galveston Island Beach Patrol. The views in this column are Davis’ and do not necessarily represent those of the beach patrol, Galveston Park Board of Trustees or any other entity.

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