IRB Rescue Competition

Avalon Beach is the birthplace of the Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB). In 1969, Warren Mitchell worked at Avalon Beach to develop an inflatable craft for rescues in the surf.  Since records started the mighty IRB has saved 108,000 lives. There are currently 1,094 IRBs being operated by 7,292 drivers and crewed by 14,388 crew in Australia. They are used by all 314 surf clubs to carry out rescues each week.   

Further information on the history of the IRB and anniversary celebrations can be found here.

Club History

50th Annivesary of the IRB
50th Anniversary TV media segments
50th Anniversary Wrap Up


Our IRB crews race in state and national competitions. Over the years our crews have won numerous state and national titles.  We currently have five IRBs including the patrol boat.

There are five events in IRB competition:

  • IRB Rescue – Single Patient Rescue
  • IRB Tube Rescue – The crewman leaves the boat to swim 25m and rescue a single patient with a tube
  • IRB Team Rescue – Two IRB crews rescue a single patient each, changing over in between
  • Mass Rescue – A single IRB team make two trips to rescue two patients
  • IRB Relay – This event is a continuous relay involving the four events detailed above in the following order: Tube Rescue, Mass Rescue, Teams Rescue and Rescue. Each leg is as per the individual event descriptions except for changeovers between legs

Further information regarding entries and the next NSW IRB Premiership and State Champions will be available on line at

If you’d like to join our team or find out more about IRB racing contact our IRB Captain at [email protected]

We acknowledge and thank Avalon Beach RSL Club who have provided regular funding for the purchase of IRB motors and boats.

Avrsl logo 2