Brevard Beach Safety
The summer season in full swing, and thousands of locals and tourists are visiting our Brevard County beaches. While most Floridians are taught from a very young age the importance of water safety and sun protection, it is important to remind ourselves of exactly what we should be looking at when heading to the beach. But first, what makes Florida beaches, specifically our Brevard beaches, different from others? Well, we are the closest state in the contiguous United States to the equator which means the sun’s rays are more powerful here. Due to the unique landscape of our beaches, we are well known for the waves created here, which can lead to rougher conditions for swimmers. We also have a wide variety of wildlife including sea turtles, jellyfish, and multiple species of sharks.
Most people when planning a beach trip will tend to just look at the chances of rain or the cloud coverage, which is important for a successful beach day. However, there are many other factors that you should look at including UV (ultraviolet) Index, rip current threat, and water conditions. Protecting yourself from harmful UV radiation is vital to protect your skin from sun damage. Apply sunscreen with a high SPF 30 minutes before exposure to the sun. It is important to reapply every two hours, or more frequent if you are in the water or sweating a lot. If you are still worried about exposure, think about wearing a wide brimmed hat, sunglasses, or lightweight clothing.
Once you arrive at the beach take notice of any flags or signs displaying the water conditions for that day. For example, a red flag means high hazardous surf and currents, yellow means moderate, and green means low hazard. A purple flag means dangerous marine life including jellyfish, stingrays, or sharks.
Rip currents can be very dangerous for those who don’t know what they ae and how to get out of one if you are stuck. Rip currents are powerful currents of water flowing away from the shore out to sea. To the trained eye you might be able to see a rip current from the shore, however more often than not they are hard to identify. If you do unfortunately find yourself in a rip current, there are a few things to do to prevent a tragedy. First of all, do not try to fight the current and swim straight to the shore. This is worst thing you can do because your body will be exhausted trying to fight the current, and you need to save your energy to escape. The best thing to do is to swim out of the rip current parallel to the shoreline. Once out, you will be able to swim at an angle back towards the shore.
It is important to review the different conditions of beaches before you arrive. The sunshine and warm water can be relaxing, but there are risks that everyone need to be aware of. Along with the tips listed above, make sure to keep an eye on children and stay hydrated while visiting one of our beautiful Brevard County beaches.