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Life’s A Beach

We all know it’s not hard to have fun at the beach, even if we are not surfers. The beach is a great place to go for a walk, lie in the sun or sit in the shade, play in the sand, go fishing, swim, scuba-dive or just simply explore.
CLEAN BEACHES: If we want to continue to enjoy the lovely clear water, clean beaches and coastal wildlife, we have to look after them. Simple things such as taking away our rubbish will keep the environment clean and help protect marine life.
SAND DUNES: By using designated walking or driving tracks when going to or from the beach, we avoid damaging the plants that hold the dunes together.
ROCK POOLS: Exploring rock pools can be lots of fun. By reminding young children to collect only empty shells, and to leave some empty shells behind, helps protect marine life. Remind children to leave rock-pool animals and plants where they are, and to always return any overturned rocks to their original position, as animals and plants will die if they are left exposed to the sun.
WATERWAYS: Much of the coastal pollution that exists begins at home. To protect the waters, do not dispose of oils, petrol, paints, thinners, pharmaceutical drugs or garden chemicals down the drains. Call your local council for advice on disposing of these things. Have any oil leaks on the car fixed promptly, as any rubbish or oil that is left on the roads and streets eventually gets washed out to sea and spoils our waters.
WHERE TO SWIM: Do not swim at a beach that is closed or not marked as these may contain dangerous rips. Always swim between the flags at beaches patrolled by lifesavers. The flags mark the safest area to swim. Do not venture out far when a yellow flag is flying, as this means the surf is dangerous. If you are unsure of conditions, ask a lifeguard.
RIPS: If you get caught in a rip or strong current and you are a strong swimmer, swim diagonally across it to safer waters. Otherwise, float and raise one arm as a distress signal until help arrives. Try not to panic, and do not attempt to swim against the current.
GETTING OUT OF TROUBLE: If you get in any other sort of trouble, float and raise one arm until help arrives. Always swim under supervision or with a friend. Never swim directly after a meal or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you get a cramp while swimming, keep the affected part perfectly still, float and raise one arm until help arrives.
ROCK PLATFORMS: If venturing out on rock platforms, be aware of waves. Also, keep away from the edge of cliffs as the rock is sometimes soft and can collapse under your feet without warning.

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