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Community Calls for More Lifeguards on Red Flag Days

Community members are calling for safety improvements when rip currents are at their peak in Lake Superior. Community members are calling for safety improvements when rip currents are at their peak in Lake Superior. |  Photo: Jon Ellis/WDIO-TV, file

Updated: August 23, 2019 08:23 AM

DULUTH, Minn. (AP) - The ever-present danger of rip currents in Lake Superior has some people in Duluth calling for more to be done to improve public safety.

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Retired police officer Dennis Hoelscher tells Minnesota Public Radio News that lifeguard services need to be improved.

Lifeguards don't work on "red flag" days that have high risk of rip currents. Hoelscher and others think guards should work on those days, work longer hours in general, work more beaches and be trained to work in big waves.

The Duluth YMCA, which runs the lifeguard program on Park Point, says posting lifeguards misleads people to think it's safe. And expanding services is difficult in what is currently mostly a break-even arrangement.

MPR reports communities across the Great Lakes struggle with how to pay for lifeguards.

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Information from: Minnesota Public Radio

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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