LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – A lot of people are trying to beat the heat by sitting poolside today, but a lifeguard shortage is causing some pools to close early or not even open at all.

With the national shortage of lifeguards, many pools in mid-Michigan are also cutting their hours or closing permanently.

Because of the pandemic, lifeguards are hard to come by at the YMCA. Aquatics Director Theresa Sheridan is struggling to keep her facility staff.

“We definitely have a shortage, the pool behind me is not open right now because we’re closed during the afternoon hours,” she said.

This is because they cut the hours the pool is open to make up for staff shortages.

The COVID pandemic has played a part, but Sheridan says they are finding ways to attract applicants, like a generous hourly wage and free training for those who apply.

Sheridan says she’s hopeful things will return to normal.

“I do hope we can bounce back to normal and get more kids working,” said Sheridan.

The American Lifeguard Association estimates the shortage impacts about a third of all pools in the U.S. Ziprecruiter states that the average hourly rate for lifeguards in Lansing in 2022 currently stands at $13 an hour.