(a) Competitors in the Rescue Tube Race events shall assemble in the marshalling area. When entries have been checked the Marshall shall notify each competitor of their buoy colour and buoy peg.
(b) After marshalling, the Referee, Sectional Referee or their Deputy (e.g. the Marshall or Announcer) shall give the command for the competitors to file into the competition area and proceed to their nominated buoy peg.
(c) The Patients will then take up their positions on the starting line.
(d) On the starting signal the patient shall enter the water and swim to their allotted buoy. On reaching their allocated buoy, the patient shall place their forearm over the top of the buoy and signal their arrival by raising their other arm to the vertical position while remaining in contact with the buoy. This signal, subject to all conditions being fulfilled shall be the determining factor in judging the patient’s arrival at their buoy.
(e) The patient must then release contact with the swimming buoy and retire to the seaward side of the swimming buoy and await arrival of the rescue tube swimmer.
Note 1: Should a competitor swim to a wrong buoy and signal the team shall be disqualified.
Note 2: The swimming buoy is described as the buoy only and does not include any attaching ropes or straps.
(f) The rescue tube swimmer shall await the patient’s signal. The rescue tube swimmer will be in their allocated position on the shoreward side of the start line and may have their toes on or behind the start line.
(g) The rescue tube swimmer may wear the rescue tube neck strap (harness) and hold the rescue tube and swim fins in their hands or place them on the sand on the shoreward side of the start/finish line. The wearing of the swim fin/s prior to the starting signal is not permitted.
Note: The swim fins shall comply with the following dimensions:

  • Maximum 65cm overall length including “shoe” or ankle strap (ankle strap extended).
  • Maximum 30cm width at the widest point of the blade.
  • Swim fins are to be measured with the shoe or ankle strap extended but not stretched. The swim fins will not be permitted to be used if they do not conform to specifications or if they are considered a safety hazard.

(h) On the patient’s arrival signal, the rescue tube swimmer crosses the start line, dons the rescue tube harness (if not already being worn) and swim fins at their own discretion and swims seaward to make the rescue of their patient.
Note: The team shall not be disqualified if the rescue tube swimmer crosses the start line and then resumes the correct position to correctly await the arrival signal from their patient.
(i) The rescue tube swimmer swims to the left hand side of the designated buoy (viewed from the beach) to the waiting patient on the seaward side of the buoy.
(j) The rescue tube swimmer and/or the patient secures the rescue tube around the patient’s body and under both arms and clipped to an O-ring. The patient and rescue tube swimmer must remain behind the buoy line during the ‘clip in’ process. With the patient clipped into the rescue tube, the rescue tube swimmer continues (clockwise) around the buoy towing the patient to the beach.
(k) The patient is permitted to assist by sculling with arms under the surface, of the water and kicking but must not swim with an out-of-water arm recovery. The patient must be towed on their back and the patient cannot be towed in any other way than clipped into the rescue tube.
Note 1: Only the rescue tube swimmer is permitted to use the swim fins.
(l) On return to the beach, the patient and rescuer shall stand, leave the water and conclude the event by finishing between their beach position finish markers. The patient must remain clipped into the rescue tube and the rescuer must be wearing the neck strap (harness) until they both have crossed the finish line. The rescuer must be in possession of both swim fins when crossing the finish line.
(m) The finish is judged on the chest of the first competitor of the team to cross the finish line on their feet and in an upright position.