County lifeguards receive ATV training

KEKAHA — Kauai lifeguards will have their capabilities extended as Kalani Vierra completed the second of two planned ATV (all-terrain vehicle) safety courses.

The training is geared towards getting the water safety officers certified to use the craft in their day-to-day as well as emergency responses.

Water safety officers who participated in the safety course learned the basics of handling the ATV as well as got hands-on experience negotiating courses in maneuverability, quick turns, emergency stops, and obstacle negotiation during the day-long session.

Vierra, who successfully completed a week-long instructor course at the Honda ATV Institute in California, conducted the courses over the past two weekends at the Kekaha Beach tower.

Each session saw four water safety officers work through a combination of “classroom” instruction via flip cards as well as hands-on supervisory instruction with Vierra overseeing the water safety officers individually handle their ATV, and offering tips as well as corrective advice as needed.

The ATV extends the coverage of the water safety officers as well as offers additional muscle in moving equipment like the jet ski to water emergencies.

Currently, Kauai lifeguards have three ATV stationed at Kekaha, Haena, and one soon to be added to the Lydgate Park towers.

Vierra noted that the addition of the Lydgate craft will enable the water safety officers to extend their coverage as far south as Nukolii Beach.

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