Lifeguards let rip with sea-dye demonstrations
Beachgoers can see firsthand how dangerous rip currents flow when local lifeguards use sea dye to identify rips at four popular Eurobodalla beaches tomorrow.
Lifeguard Services Australia, Surf Lifesaving Australia and Eurobodalla Shire Council have partnered for the exercise, which will take place at Malua Bay Beach, South Broulee Beach, Surf Beach and Tuross Head’s One Tree Beach at 10am on Saturday 7 January.
According to Surf Life Saving Australia, rips are the number one danger swimmers face at the beach. Each year, rip currents are directly responsible for thousands of rescues and on average more than 20 drownings across the country.
More people drown in rips each year than deaths from shark attacks, floods and cyclones combined.
Eurobodalla Lifeguard Services chief executive officer Stan Wall said the demonstration sought to highlight the importance of swimming between the flags at patrolled beaches.
“We’ve had no fatalities here in the Eurobodalla and we’re trying to educate the public so it stays that way,” he said.
“Last year we did 42 rescues on local beaches, the overwhelming majority of these were rip-related - people swimming outside the flags or people refusing directions from lifeguards to move to the flagged areas.
“To help raise public awareness we will release dye into the water at 10am to highlight the path of rips so people can clearly see how the rip currents travel.
“Local lifeguards will be there at each beach to explain what the currents and rips are doing as the dye spreads.”
Mr Wall said the four beaches were chosen due to their popularity.
“We’re encouraging locals and visitors to come down and have a look at this rare opportunity,” Mr Wall said.
“The message is clear: Be rip aware and swim between the flags at patrolled beaches this summer.”
The exercise will be followed up with another simultaneous sea-dye demonstration of eight patrolled beaches on Australia Day. Media Release
Above: One Tree Lookout overlooking Tuross Beach is a great spot for seeing where the rips of the beach are - Photo by Henry Kark