Myrtle Beach lifeguards not properly certified when swimmer disappeared in June, city leaders say

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Earlier this month, News13 told you the City of Myrtle Beach suspended its agreement with the company Myrtle Beach Lifeguards after the certification of one of the lifeguards was called into question.

In June, Myrtle Beach City Manager John Pederson says they got a complaint about a Myrtle Beach Lifeguard.

“That caused us to look at that lifeguard, we found out that lifeguard did not have a certification,” said Pederson.

Around that same time, a 14-year-old boy disappeared while swimming in the ocean, and Pederson says those lifeguards who are now being questioned were in charge of the area where the teen disappeared.

The city then asked for certifications for all of the lifeguards for the company and found 10 of the 13 lifeguards did not have current certifications. Soon after, Pederson says the company got back to them with new certification cards.

“There were questions about the certification cards about whether or not the testing had been done in an appropriate location and some other elements of the test that came into question,” said Pederson.

After that questioning, the city suspended the contract with the company, and now the city and the American Red Cross are investigating.

“”Likely, the o outcome of that is going to be that certifications were not appropriately obtained,” said Pederson.

Tuesday, a representative of the lifeguard company went before Myrtle Beach City Council and asked that his lifeguards get back to work.

Pederson says that likely won’t happen anytime soon as they continue their investigation.

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