Lifesavers warn of dangerous conditions along NSW coast
BEACHGOERS have been urged to take care after Surf Life Savers issued a warning of powerful swells across the coast.
Surf Life Saving Far North Coast duty officer Jimmy Keough said relatively calm Tweed Coast waters were expected to give way to strong swells later in the week.
"At this point in time the beach conditions here are pretty good but they are expected to deteriorate over the coming days," Mr Keough said.
"We are asking people to take care... and only swim at patrolled locations."
While Surf Life Saving's patrol period has ended, he said volunteers along the coast would be prepared for the higher risk of incidents.
"All our services are aware there will be some dangerous conditions over coming days," he said.
NSW Surf Life Saving warned a strong southerly swell was expected to see dangerous conditions develop near Nowra, on the state's south coast, by this afternoon.
Conditions were due to deteriorate overnight and a warning has been put in place for the entire NSW coast for tomorrow.
Northern NSW could be impacted by "deceptively powerful swells" until the early hours of Thursday.
South-facing beaches will be hardest hit, with swells likely to peak at three metres.
NSW Lifesaving Manager Andy Kent urged the public to heed the warnings, particularly after a rising number of deaths in NSW coastal waters.
"Unfortunately this season we have recorded 45 coastal drowning fatalities," Mr Kent said.
"At an average of one death almost every four days in 2016 this is obviously a statistic that is concerning to lifesavers."
Mr Kent urged people to be aware of their environment, take the time to check the weather forecast and let others know of your plans.
"If you're going to be rock fishing, wear the recommended safety equipment including a lifejacket, and if you have any doubt about your abilities in the conditions, it's best not to go out," he said.
Surf Life Saving Queensland has also issued warnings, as dangerous conditions were expected to extend along South East Queensland's coastline.
For information on beaches patrolled by lifeguards during winter, visit beachsafe.org.au.