Surfers Rescue 365: a program that can save lives | Photo: Surfers Rescue 365

Surfing Western Australia announced the launch of its first Surfers Rescue 365 course.

The program debuts at City Beach on June 11 and will provide recreational surfers with the opportunity to do a three-hour free CPR, first aid, and board rescue techniques course.

The project is a joint-venture between Surfing WA and Surf Life Saving WA and will teach basic life-saving skills to the surfing community, in a state whose coastline is 99 percent unpatrolled.

"This course is designed around the fact that surfers are in the water 365 days a year all up and down the coast and those surfers could potentially save the life of another surfer or even a swimmer," notes Mark Lane, CEO at Surfing WA.

Taj Burrow, Mark Richards, Jake Paterson and Kelly Slaters are the Surfers Rescue 365 ambassadors. They believe that this initiative will save lives.

"I think it's essential for anyone who surfs to have these skills sets. A course like this should be part of a schools curriculum, it's just as important as learning to read or write," adds four-time world champion, Mark Richards.

The Town of Cambridge contributed with $10,000 and, in the next two years, the Surfers Rescue 365 program expects to train 70 local surfers.

The next course will run at Trigg Beach on June 18, and is supported by the City of Stirling.

So, how can surfers rescue struggling swimmers?

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