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Updated: Tuesday, 24 Apr 2012, 10:29 AM EDT
Published : Monday, 23 Apr 2012, 4:36 PM EDT
WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) - In about a month, Misquamicut Beach will be packed with people on a daily basis, and the Westerly-Pawcatuck Area Chamber of Commerce has taken big steps to make the beach safe.
“We’ve purchased two EMILY lifeguard robots,” said Lisa Konicki.
Emergency Integrated Lifesaving Lanyard (EMILY) lifeguard robots provide a fast and safe rescue to a swimmer in distress.
An EMILY robot can travel up to 24 mph across waves and can arrive to a distressed swimmer minutes before a lifeguard and serve as a floatation device.
One lifeguard remotely operates EMILY while the other swims out to the distressed swimmer.
The EMILY robots will be the first on the East Coast, and it is extremely important that police, fire personnel, and other ambulance companies have the opportunity to learn how to use it properly.
Lifeguards will begin their training in California at the end of May and the EMILYs will be in Rhode Island by early June.
“We will have the safest beaches on the East Coast,” said Konicki.
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