As the mercury rises and people flock to the beach, we’re being urged to take more care when swimming these summer holidays.
Almost 300 people have drowned in rivers, creeks, beaches, lakes, pools and bathtubs this year.
Only at the start of this week, a man drowned at a popular Gold Coast beach, which prompted calls to review safety procedures.
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A beach expert, Dr Rob Brander, said too many people are ignoring warnings at the beach and we should be educated about the danger of underwater currents.
“At the beach, if you’re not swimming near the flags then you’re going to be swimming near a rip current,” he told Nine.
“If you don’t understand what a rip is, then you’re in big trouble as you don’t know how to spot them and how to react.”
The beach safety message for people to swim between the flags is drilled into Aussies at a young age but has it lost its effectiveness? The golden rule for beach safety is being criticised this morning with one renowned swimming safety expert saying it’s useless. #9Today pic.twitter.com/sEJRnicyl1
— The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) December 28, 2017
At home, parents are being urged to watch their children extremely closely when they’re playing in the water, especially if their kids are wearing floaties and other devices which help swimming.
Experts believe these devices can easily give mums and dads a false sense of security while their child swims.