Summer is almost here in Erie County and people are planning to come from all over to visit Presque Isle State Park with its renowned trails, fishing spots and beaches.

The Public Safety Department of the park has noted that staffing isn’t quite at full strength. This means fewer beaches will be guarded at this time.

Megan Comendarek, a resident who takes her students to the beach, knows the importance of the supervisions at the beaches.

“It’s super important. All of these kids are our students so we’re making sure to maintain their safety. It’s super important to always keep an eye on them,” said Meghan Comendarek, beachgoer.

The park is currently onboarding 12 new first-year guards to help offset their problem, but officials said that eight more are needed in order to staff all the beaches properly.

During the week, Beach 6, 8, and 11 are guarded. On the weekends, Beach 3 and Beach 10 will be added to that list.

Although Lake Erie is the shallowest of the Great Lakes, the manager of the lifeguards at Presque Isle said that this is what also makes it the most dangerous.

“Lake Erie is the shallowest of the Great Lakes in the Great Lakes system. Also, the most deadly because of that. It doesn’t take much wind or current for Lake Erie to produce waves and/or current. Anytime you’re swimming in an unguarded area, whether it be at Presque Isle or another area or even a pool, is very unsafe just because you don’t have those watchful eyes over you,” said Steve Dunsmore, Lake Erie Lifeguard Manager.

Regardless of the state of the staffing, residents said they are grateful for those looking after the safety of people frequenting the beaches.

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“It’s good to know that we have lifeguards to keep our kids safe for sure,” Comendarek said.

Residents should expect to see less lifeguards than usual for the moment, so swim with caution. The park is expecting to hopefully be fully-staffed soon.