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Courtesy of www.slsa.com.au
The first rule of beach safety is: Always swim between the flags.
These are the horizontally striped red and yellow flags which you will find on patrolled Australian beaches. They indicate not only which stretch of water is safe to swim in but also an area where surf lifesavers keep a watchful eye on those in the water.
Some dangers you may face outside these "flagged" areas are submerged rocks, rips and currents.Surf life saving Australia. - www.slsa.com.au
NEVER - NEVER - NEVER:
Red and Yellow Flags - it is safe to swim between the flags, and its the safest spot to swim.
Yellow Flags - the surf is potentially dangerous with bad conditions.
Red Flags - DANGER! - DO NOT SWIM IN THE WATER - when the red flag is up the beach is closed.
HOW TO SPOT A RIP:
Rip currents are identified by the following;
IF YOU ARE CAUGHT IN A RIP:
BE SUN SAFE:
NEGOTIATING THE SURF:
"In the 1920s, the surf lifesaver replaced the bushman and the digger as the typical Australian. Like his predecessors, the surf lifesaver was masculine, tanned, fit, strong and selfless. Bound by mateship and subjected to but not tamed by military discipline. also modern and urban, a reflection of the nation, or the nation as it wanted to be.
Surf lifesavers have featured in advertisements for a range of products. They have promoted tourism and migration and have become as identifiably Australian as kangaroos and the Sydney Harbour Bridge .
Surf lifesavers have saved thousands of lives. They volunteer their time, marking the safest places to swim with red and yellow flags and giving people the confidence to enjoy the surf.
Surf lifesavers are not all bronzed and beautiful. They are men and women, young and old. They are passionate about their beach and their community. They are competitive and committed. They are part of a great tradition that echoes across the past 100 years, from Darwin to Devonport and Bondi to Bunbury. Surf lifesavers are ordinary people doing an extraordinary job, voluntarily." from www.nma.gov.au
What is a lifeguard?
A lifeguard is a person who provides beach safety to local government or other land managers (such as resort or amusement park operators). Unlike volunteer surf lifesavers, who patrol on weekends and public holidays during the swimming season, a lifeguard usually patrols seven days a week – although this depends on location.
How do tell the difference between a lifeguard and surf lifesaver?
Most lifeguards now wear the internationally recognised red and yellow uniforms, although a number of local government areas have not yet adopted these international guidelines. Lifeguards can be identified by the word ‘Lifeguard’ on their uniforms and rescue gear, and they do not wear the red and yellow caps of trained volunteer surf lifesavers.
SLSA’s current recommended treatment for bluebottle stings is consistent with current ARC guidelines, that is:
Marine Stingers (Box Jellyfish and Irukandji):Are found in North Queensland, the Northern Territory, and North Western Australia coastal waters.
Stinger season is in force October to May.
Do not swim in unprotected waters without proper stinger resistant suits
Stinger warning sign - DO NOT SWIM!
Marine Stinger Treatment:
In particular, hot water should not be used for box jellyfish or Irukandji stings.
This is a species of jellyfish which has become known about in recent years, due to deaths of swimmers in Australia .
Box jellyfish – Flood the area with vinegar for a minimum of 30 seconds. Send for urgent medical attention and monitor the person’s airway, breathing and circulation and be ready to apply CPR if necessary.
Comprehensive First Aid Instructions:
1. Retrieve the victim from the water and restrain them, if necessary.
2. If others are available, immediately send them for ambulance / medical help (emphasise the sting is from a Box jellyfish as the Ambulance may have antivenom available).
3. Check the victims Airway, breathing and circulation (ABC). Treat with mouth-to-mouth resuscitation (EAR), or heart massage (CPR), if necessary.
4. If others are available, or if resuscitation is not needed, pour vinegar over the stung area for a minimum of 30 seconds to inactivate remaining stinging cells on any adherent tentacles left on the skin.
5. AFTER vinegar application, apply compression bandages directly over major stings, ie. those:
a) covering an area more than half of one limb
b) causing impairment of consciousness
c) causing impairment of breathing
d) causing impairment of circulation
If vinegar is unavailable, the rescuer should pull tentacles off using their fingers (only a faint, harmless prickling will be felt) - before applying the compression bandages. REMEMBER to wash your hands after this as sting cells will remain on your fingers until they are carefully washed off!
6. If available, use CSL Chironex antivenom for all major cases. Three ampoules each containing 20000 units may be given intramuscularly, above the bandages, by a trained health professional on the beach. One ampoule intravenously may be given by medical personnel.
7. Cold packs may be used (15 minutes and repeated when necessary) to help ease the skin pain in conscious victims.
8. In severe envenomation, use oxygen if available; Inhaled analgesia (ie entonox or penthrane) can be administered for unremitting pain in conscious, breathing, cooperative patients; its use should be discontinued if the patient's condition worsens.
Found in ONLY in North Queensland, Northern Territory and North Western Australia.
Salt water crocodile.
Don't risk your life!
Courtesy of www.deh.gov.au
Shark attacks occur rarely. Only a few of the 450 or so shark species have been known to attack people. Unfortunately, some attacks are fatal.
There are some easy and common sense precautions to take that can help reduce the risk of a shark attack. This risk minimisation advice is reproduced from the Australian Shark Attack File.
For more information on shark attacks, risk minimisation, statistics and maps, please see: