Lifeguards start at Klineline on Wednesday

They have been absent from swimming hole since 2010

By Erik Hidle, Columbian staff writer

Published:

Updated: July 29, 2013, 7:15 PM

 

Clark County lifeguards will begin their watch over Klineline Pond in Salmon Creek Regional Park on Wednesday morning.

The lifeguards, which have been absent from the popular swimming hole since 2010, will be in place every day through Sept. 2. Additional weekend lifeguard coverage will continue through Sept. 15.

The lifeguards will be on duty from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In May, Clark County commissioners decided to pay for a lifeguard program after a discussion prompted by Commissioner David Madore.

Madore lobbied his fellow commissioners to use the metropolitan park district fund to pay up to $120,000 per year for guards.

“It’s the most proactive thing we can do to protect life,” Madore said at the time of the discussion.

A week later, commissioners Tom Mielke and Steve Stuart said they had been thinking about it and were on board with the addition.

The original plan was for lifeguards to begin in July, but the county needed additional time to find properly certified individuals for an open water location.

After the county announced the start date Monday, Madore said he was happy lifeguards would be watching over Klineline.

“It is rewarding to see our county government serving citizens better while saving costs,” Madore said. “Step by step, we are improving our parks. Your tax dollars at work now includes free entrance and lifeguards at Klineline.”

The swimming hole has four lifeguard stations and float lines to mark designated swimming areas.

Klineline is the only county park to have lifeguards on staff.

The county also offers free life jackets for individuals to borrow while swimming in the pond.

Erik Hidle: 360-735-4547; http://twitter.com/col_clarkgov; erik.hidle@columbian.com.