BECKLEY, WV (WVNS)– With a local and national lifeguard shortage ongoing, it’s been a concern for pools in the area to fill the need for more trained lifeguards.

The YMCA of Southern West Virginia just certified six more lifeguards for 2023, making the total number of certifications 22.

The certifications mean more trained professionals are capable of saving lives than before. However, the director of Aquatics at the YMCA of Southern West Virginia said there is still a long way to go.

“I feel that 22 is a good number, I feel confident in that number,” said Cat Gunther. “I personally would like to see that number doubled but with the national lifeguard shortage going on, that number is pretty good.”

Another lifeguard training is will be offered at the YMCA of Southern West Virginia soon. The prerequisite course will be Friday, April 28, and the actual training class will be one week later on May 5.