Known as the golf capital of the world, the city of Myrtle Beach is looking to add some more sun and surf into the equation. According to a recent report from MyrtleBeachOnline.com, residents of the Northwoods neighborhood were not pleased to find out that the places they’d been surfing for years were actually designated no-surf zones. The recent addition of lifeguards in some of these zones (to police surf activity) has left the community in a huff.
City Manager John Pedersen commented, “Before there was no lifeguard located at 78th or 79th avenues. Surfing isn’t allowed in that area but people were surfing there because there was not a constant [lifeguard] presence to enforce that. Residents in that area complained about not being able to surf, so we decided to take a look at it.”
Surfers will definitely appreciate the extra space, since some of the beaches where surfing is allowed are being overpopulated with swimmers. Revision to the surf zones, as well as the addition of more lifeguards, would increase the number of surf and swim zones while decreasing the distance each lifeguard is responsible for.
The city is also considering taking down the “swim at your own risk” signs and replacing them with information on how to contact the “mobile guards” that will be patrolling the beaches. These guards won’t be set up in the stationary chairs, but instead will do constant patrol of the beach, to cover the maximum area for safety.
The report states that “if passed as expected surfing would be allowed all day in the area from 29th Avenue South to the south city limits; from 34th Avenue North to 47th Avenue North; from 62nd to 68th avenues North; the new zone between 78th and 81st avenues North; and from 87th Avenue North to the north city limits.”