Ocean 101: Are You Prepared? - Delphi Boston Delphi Boston

Ocean 101: Are You Prepared?

beach safety rules

Planning on going to the beach this summer? Whether you’re new to the beach or go all the time, you can benefit from some of these ocean tips:

Safety First

  1. Don’t turn your back on the ocean – The ocean is unpredictable and big waves can come out of nowhere. Make sure you’ve got your eye on it so you can react in time.
  2. Observe currents – It’s easy to go play in the water and lose sight of the place where you went in. That’s because currents, even mild ones, will slowly take you down the shore. Make sure you know which way the current is going and keep an eye on a landmark while you’re in the water so you don’t get pulled too far away.
  3. Watch out for rip currents – If you see warnings about rip currents at your beach, take them seriously. Rip currents are powerful and dangerous for even the strongest swimmers. If you get caught in a rip current, don’t try to swim against it, instead swim parallel with the shore until you get out of it, then swim ashore.
  4. Don’t dive in head first – To protect your head and neck, enter the ocean feet first. You don’t know the strength of the waves or what may be hiding in them and you don’t want your face to find out first. When boogie boarding, keep your hands out in front to protect your head and neck.
  5. Beware of jellyfish – Don’t swim near jellyfish. A sting can seriously ruin a day at the beach, but bring a spray bottle of vinegar along just in case. Vinegar on the sting helps with the pain until you can seek medical help.
  6. Consider water temp – Even though it may be hot outside, the water may not be the same. Evaluate the water temperature before playing in it and decide on a safe amount of time to spend in the water before taking a break to warm up and dry off. Small children are especially affected by cooler water temps even if they deny it. It’s best to take breaks to make sure they’re staying safe and warm.
  7. Pick up after yourself (and your dog) – No one likes stepping on trash or, even worse poop, on the beach. Please be courteous to the other people on the beach and avoid potential harm to the life that call the ocean home.
  8. Buddy system is the best – Never let kids swim or wander off alone. Not only are there lots of strangers at the beach, but the ocean is a big place. Buddies are a safe way to have some freedom and still have fun.

Helpful Hints

  1. Be creative when hiding your valuables – Don’t put your valuables in your shoes, that is not hiding them well. Instead, hide them in a clean baby diaper or clean out an old sunscreen bottle and put them inside.
  2. Use baby powder – When you’re ready to leave the beach, baby powder is great at getting that extra sand off your skin.
  3. Put your aloe vera gel in the fridge – Chilled aloe vera feels even better on a painful sunburn or sting.
  4. Look for lost kids downwind – If you don’t know where your kids wandered off to, chances are they’re downwind. Studies show that kids often travel the path of least resistance.
    beach etiquette
  5. Bring a fitted sheet – Instead of using towels that let sand pile on them, use a fitted sheet where you can place a cooler or bags in the corners to create a little wall between you and the sand.
  6. Bring cheap sunglasses – The chances that your sunglasses get lost, stepped on, or sandy are quite high. So leave your Ray-Bans at home and opt for a cheaper pair for the day at the beach.
  7. Don’t forget toys – If you’re spending the day at the beach, you don’t want to be surrounded by a bunch of bored kids. Bring buckets and shovels for the sand, boogie boards for the water, and some recreational toys like a frisbee, football, or volleyball for the teens and adults.
  8. Know what you can, and can’t, take off the beach – Some beaches have strict rules about what you can take home. If you’re caught taking home something prohibited there may be a hefty fine. Once you know what’s allowed, set a limit for the number of seashells everyone can collect to avoid bringing the whole beach home.

A safe summer is a fun summer. We know you can’t watch your kids all of the time so teaching them the proper way to behave at the ocean is important. When they’re more inland, send your children to summer camp for a fun, and safe, week.


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