Policies and Procedures

Risk Management Procedure

The Bondi to Bronte Ocean Swim (incorporating all swim courses available on the day, hereafter called the "Event") has a team of volunteers and paid personnel who assist with the preparation and running of the swim. There is a committee of key personnel who meet to decide on how the Event should be run based on industry best practice and risk management protocols. Bronte Surf Life Saving Club (BSLSC) obtains Event insurance for this Event under the umbrella of Surf Life Saving New South Wales, and as such must meet their requirements for conducting Events. BSLSC must also meet the requirements of local council and Maritime, with all three entities providing approval to conduct this Event.

BSLSC risk management practices cover the many activities which occur on the day, with planning to manage identified, potential risks. These activities include but are not limited to:

  • Water safety
  • Volunteers
  • Water station
  • First Aid
  • Condition assessment
  • Evacuation
  • Search & Rescue

The Event committee are responsible for ensuring each activity on the day is conducted in accordance with our planned operations. Ultimately BSLSC want all persons involved in the Event have a great experience without harm or injury occurring. 

Water Safety Procedures

On the day of the Event, there will be a water safety briefing for all water safety personnel involved. This water safety briefing includes swimmer drop off, incident management and communications. 

Based on water safety ratio requirements set out by Surf Life Saving Australia, the Event meets these guidelines and exceeds the recommended water safety numbers. The Event is known for its water safety personnel as many swimmers provide wonderful reviews stating their thanks for the water safety team.

On the day, we will have the following water safety in place:

  • Rescue boats (inflatable and other)
  • Lifeguard operated jet skis with mats
  • Rescue Boards
  • Surf Skis
  • Rescue Tubes
  • Elevated spotters
  • Drones (subject to approval)

If any swimmer is struggling and requires assistance, we ask that an arm is raised and the swimmer remains calm as we respond to the request.

If another swimmer identifies a person in need of assistance, we ask that each swimmer makes themselves available to signal for assistance in an attempt to help us identify any persons in need of help. 

The water safety team will identify any request for assistance as quickly as we can and we will get assistance to that person as soon as practical.

It is a requirement that all swimmers follow the direction of water safety as we conduct this event with everyone's best interest in mind. 

Surf boats, surf ski paddlers and other support craft will be patrolling the course for the duration of the Event). If a swimmer feels unable to go on, they should attract the attention of the water safety personnel. REMAIN CALM, stay stationary, raise your arm and wait for assistance. A swimmer deemed incapable of completing the course will be brought onto one of the support vessels by the water safety team and transported to shore. However, please note that your safety cannot be guaranteed. 

Warning is given to all entrants that this is a demanding ocean swim Event. Obvious risks include and are not limited to the following: injury and/or drowning, due to being hit by other persons, objects, boats or vessels. Other obvious risks include, cold weather and water, entry and exit injuries, stings, sandbars, medical conditions and marine life. 

Swimmers enter at their own risk and are responsible for their own physical condition. Any swimmer who has not passed the halfway point off South Bondi Headland within 45 minutes of the last age category wave will be removed from the Event and transported to shore. 

This is not only for the safety of all swimmers but it is also for the safety of our water safety team.

Any swimmer who does pull out of the Event must notify Event officials immediately and return the ankle strap timing chip. Failure to return the timing bracelet will result in a fee of $50. If you withdraw from the Event and need transport to Bronte Beach, the Event organisers have supplied a shuttle bus which is located at the security bag drop location behind the Bondi Pavilion. 

Prior to starting your swim, you must cross over the timing mats which are located on the beach. Failure to cross these mats will result in your swim not being timed. The mats are located between the barriers on the beach, at the starting area, identified by the flags on the beach. 

While in the water, all swimmers must comply with the directions of lifeguards and/or the water safety team. Failure to do so will result in disqualification from the Event. 

It is the responsibility of the swimmer to inform themselves of the beach and water conditions on the day, prior to participating in the Event.

5km Eligibility Criteria & Conditions of Entry
  • The minimum age on event day is 13 years old
  • The 5km swim course is open to advanced level swimmers only
  • You must be able to complete a 5km timed pool swim in under 1hr 30mins and are required to provide evidence to the event organiser by Friday 18 November 2022. 
  • You acknowledge that the swim course distance is approximate only, and the final distance will be determined by bouy placement on the day subject to swell and weather considerations.
  • Participants under the age of 18 must have a parent or guardian present on event day.

The event organiser requires proof of eligibility which may be provided as either of the following:

  • Evidence of a 5km timed pool swim via a smart device (under 1hr 30mins) completed within 3 months of this event  
  • Published results from a previously completed 5km open water swim (under 120 mins) completed within 12 months of this event 
    e.g., results page from the Sydney Harbour Splash, Cole Classic, Balmoral Swim or Malabar Magic Ocean Swim, South Head Roughwater or similar.

On the day, to ensure the safety of all participants and water safety: 

  • all participants must complete the Bondi to Bronte 5km course within a cut off time of 120 mins.
  • Participants who have not reached the Bronte turning buoy within 55 mins, or the finish line within 120 mins will not be permitted to continue and will be removed from the course and returned to the shore at Bondi Beach by water safety personnel.
Wetsuit Policy

Please read and understand our Wetsuit Policy

Elite Division Swimwear Policy

The Event adopts the following policy in regards to swimwear for competitors in the Elite Division only:

For water temperature = or > 18°C, we permit all FINA Approved pool* swimwear as per FINA By Law 8.3 (as approved by the FINA Bureau, version 13 August 2021) . 

BL8 - BL8.3 for pool swimming competitions*

Swimsuits for men shall not extend above the navel nor below the knee, and for women, shall not cover the neck, or extend past the shoulder, nor below the knee. The swimsuits shall be made from textile materials. 

For water temperature less than 18°C on race day, wetsuits are permitted for elite division entrants and strongly encouraged for all participants.

*while the Event is an open water course, we do not follow the FINA open water policy on wetsuits for water temperature above 18C.(By Laws as approved by the FINA Bureau on August 5, 2016)

Race Rules
  • Each swimmer will be required to wear an Event timing chip bracelet.
  • Officials maintain the right to reject or refuse any entry.
  • Medical officers commissioned by Bronte SLSC have the authority to remove a competitor from the swim without reason.
  • All swimmers must be unaided; eg no flippers, wet suits, boards, or any other floating gear is permitted except for the 'Families, Flippers Wetsuits and Floaties' category. All swimmers must swim the prescribed course.
  • All swimmers are to wear their prescribed cap and timing bracelet.
  • The decisions of the Race Director are final. All swimmers are to behave in a sportsman like manner.
Dispute Resolution - Event Results and Sportsmanship

The Event will ensure that all competitors have access to a fair and equitable process in dealing with grievance and provide an avenue for competitors to affect their final position.

The policies and procedures to raise a complaint and dispute must be completed as follows:

  • Each complaint/dispute must be submitted in writing to the Race Director within 45min of the swim for consideration.
  • Each complain/dispute will be dealt with by the Race Director of the Bondi to Bronte Ocean Swim and the Bronte Surf Life Saving Club Event Committee in their absolute discretion.
Privacy Policy

The Bondi to Bronte Ocean Swim respects your ability to make informed choices about the collection and use of your personal information. The Event respects your right to privacy and we are bound by National Privacy Principles in the Privacy Act. We use personal information collected from competitors to inform them of competition details or advance notice of competitions. We consider that information provided by you to us is sensitive and deserves to be handled with the utmost care. For this reason, all files are strictly confidential and all information is classified.


Bronte Surf Life Saving Club Inc. is covered by its own public liability insurance. This does not include personal accident insurance. It is strongly recommended that you take out your own personal accident and ambulance cover for the Event. Your private health insurance policy may include this, however you will need to check this specifically with your private health insurer.

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