Panama City Beach Council works to combat lifeguard shortage issue

Panama City Beach

PANAMA CITY BEACH Fla. (WMBB) — In Panama City Beach, the city council is working to bring more lifeguards to our beaches by partnering with lodging services. 

Just over a year ago, the council signed a resolution that allows resorts to provide their own lifeguards on or near their property. 

Right now, there are only three locations with lifeguards on duty in all of Bay County’s beaches. The goal of this partnership is to increase that number.

Panama City Beach Mayor Mark Sheldon said so far no resorts have joined due to costs, but he said money is an issue for the city as well. 

“So we want to make sure that we are sharing some of the responsibility and some of the burden,” Sheldon said. “That cost has been put out there and we are going to revisit it with the chief and see if we can initiate more conversations.”

He said the goal is to have lifeguards every quarter mile. Mayor Sheldon said the safety of our residents and visitors is always a top priority. 

He said they have a flag system for a reason and it is important everyone is being responsible for their safety.  

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