In recognition of the fundamental responsibilities of a professional open water lifeguard, the trust and confidence placed in the lifeguard, the unwavering devotion to duty required of the lifeguard, and the dignity commensurate with the lifeguard's position, the United States Lifesaving Association recognizes ethical principles.
- Maintain an unwavering dedication to the safety of those they are assigned to protect
- Recognize and accept that heightened personal dangers are an unavoidable aspect of the job.
- Maintain high standards of fitness, recognizing that their strength, stamina, and physical skill may mean the difference between life and death.
- Make every reasonable effort to prevent accidents before they occur.
- Avoid any undue distraction which may deter them from their primary responsibility.
- Proudly carry out the duties they are assigned, providing the highest possible levels of courtesy, respect and assistance to those whom they watch over.
- Take proactive steps to educate the public about the hazards of the aquatic environment and ways to safely enjoy aquatic recreation.
- Promote their profession through personal actions which serve to demonstrate that lifeguards everywhere are deserving of the trust placed in them by the public they serve.
- Diligently follow established policies and procedures set forth by their employing agency to promote the best possible public service.