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Public-images-osm logo.svg lifeguard
PALS Lifeguards on Sandspit Beach.jpg
A place where a lifeguard is on duty Show/edit corresponding data item.
Group: emergencies
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodesshould not be used on waysmay be used on areas (and multipolygon relations)should not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Documented values: 2
Status: approvedPage for proposal

A  lifeguard (sometimes also known as a lifesaver  lifesaving) is a rescuer who ensures the safety, and carries out rescues, of swimmers, surfers, and other water sports participants, in locations such as a swimming pool, water park, beach, river or lake.

They may also, particularly on inland waterways, sometimes be involved in the rescue of sailors from small vessels in distress.

Lifeguards may be paid professionals or volunteers only. This tag does not distinguish between them.

This key is used on water recreation features such as a beach, swimming pool or water park, where there will be a lifeguard on duty who may not be in a fixed location while on duty.


Tagging Description Images
lifeguard=base A lifeguard base 00 1047 Lifeguard station - Westkapelle (NL).jpg
lifeguard=tower A lifeguard tower 00 1252 DLRG-Station - Lifeguard station.jpg
lifeguard=yes Mobile lifeguards on patrol PALS Lifeguards on Sandspit Beach.jpg

How to map

Add lifeguard=base/tower on a node or a way to indicate that there is a lifeguard on duty with a specific structure. Don't forget to add emergency=lifeguard too on this node/way.

Add lifeguard=yes to the tagging for the beach, swimming pool etc. to indicate that there is a lifeguard on duty somewhere in this area, but they will not be in a fixed location.

If the lifeguard is there for only part of the year, add seasonal=yes or specify the exact season with seasonal=spring/summer/autumn/winter.

Alternatively, if there is no lifeguard patrolling this area, add lifeguard=no.

Tags used in combination

  • opening_hours=* - These opening hours should reflect the actual times that a lifeguard may be found on duty, either daily e.g. Mo-Su 08:00-17:00, or the time of year that they are there e.g. Oct-Apr Sa-Su 06:00-17:00
  • If their duty hours are different to the posted opening hours of the facility they are at (e.g. beach is open 24 hours a day, but lifeguard is only on duty during daylight hours) add opening_hours:lifeguard=*

See also

  • supervised=yes
  • emergency=lifeguard - To indicate the permanent, or semi-permanent locations (e.g. structure is removed over winter, but is replaced in the same position the following summer), such as lifeguard towers or buildings, that lifeguards will be found while on duty.