A Quick Beach Safety Reminder: Beach Warning Flags
Although the Emerald Coast has experienced some cooler than average temperatures this spring, the temperatures are rising and hot summer days are right around the corner and that means plenty of time for the beach. While Emerald Coast Beaches are patrolled and safeguarded by professional lifeguards, paying attention to beach safety flags is another way for you and your family to stay safe. The beach safety flag system is a visual indication of surf and tide conditions. The warning flags fly daily from 9:00 am-6:00 pm and you can get updated weather and beach conditions on line before you head out for the day. Â As a reminder:
Double Red Flags mean the water is closed.
A Red Flag means there is high surf and/or strong currents.
A Yellow Flag means moderate surf and currents.
A Green Flag means low surf and currents.
A Purple Flag indicates dangerous marine life, most notably jellyfish. While shark attacks capture the publicâ€™s imagination, you are much more likely to be stung by one of these salt water pests, than be attacked by a shark.
Rip currents present the greatest potential for danger for swimmers in the Gulf of Mexico and account for more than 80% of all rescues. Rip currents are generally found in and around sandbars, relatively close to shore. If you find yourself caught in a Gulf rip current, â€œBreak The Grip Of The Ripâ€ by following these steps:
Remain calm and donâ€™t fight the current. Float calmly until the current begins to lessen.
Swim parallel to shore and then at angle towards the beach.
Never swim alone.
As one veteran lifeguard said, â€œbe smart out there and youâ€™ll stay safeâ€.Â Â Â And remember, itâ€™s up to you to help keep our beaches safe and clean, so please refrain from littering and lighting fires. Vehicles, animals, and glass are also prohibited on the beach. You Might Also Like: Don’t Forget These Five Items In Your Family Beach Bag! Tips To Help You Beat the Heat A Quick Beach Safety Reminder: Beach Warning Flags