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Columbia short 28 lifeguards heading into summer

The Columbia Parks and Recreation Department said it was short 28 lifeguards on Tuesday, which could cause pool hours to shorten.

The city is offering to help cover most of the cost for lifeguard certification for anyone more than 15 years old, said Columbia Parks and Recreation Director Mike Griggs.

However, if the city does not have nearly 30 lifeguards by the time the six city pools open Memorial Day weekend, pools could see cut back hours.

“Some of those that are fairly small, we maybe only open it for four hours a day instead of the full eight hours a day,” Griggs said. “So, those are things that we’d have to consider if we don’t get enough lifeguards to do it.”

Information on certification and the application process for lifeguards can be found here.

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