Southern Florida is famous for its beaches, and each year millions of people visit the shoreline and leave with nothing more than great memories. Nevertheless, beach related and water related injuries can and do occur. Beach injuries can ruin a beautiful summer afternoon and can leave you with months or years of pain, lost income, and doctor’s bills.
Strong currents, strong sun, marine life, lightning, contaminated water, and other hazards exist on almost every beach. Taking a few precautions can help prevent injuries and can ensure your vacation is a great one:
1) Swim at beaches with lifeguards.
Swimming at designated areas ensures there is someone who is looking out for your safety in the event of an injury, cramps, or unexpected difficulties. Swimming in a place with lifeguards also ensures you are in a supervised area where you know the water is safe and clean. Lifeguards are trained to respond to an array of medical emergencies, so even if you run into trouble your medical outcome may be much better with a lifeguard nearby.
2) Know what to do about rip currents.
These are strong currents which flow away from shore and can push you out to the sea. If you notice still water between waves, be wary—it could be a rip current. If you get caught in a rip current, stay calm and swim back to the shore at an angle, staying parallel with the land. Do not try to fight the current.
3) Read about water conditions and wave conditions before heading to the beach.
Conditions change regularly, so consider using your phone or an app to keep track. You don’t want to swim in water that has been found unsafe. Always obey warnings indicating an area is not safe for swimming—these warnings are there for your safety.
4) Check the weather before heading to the beach.
Do not head to the beach during a storm or when lightning is a problem. Water conducts lightning and can lead to severe injury. Even when storms are further away, they can move quickly, so make sure you have the latest weather information. If you are out on the water when a storm moves in, it may be too late for you to make it to shore.
5) Swim close to the shore.
It will be easier for you to head for shore if you encounter a riptide, cramp, or other dangers if you’re not too far away. Swimming close to shore also ensures lifeguards can see you clearly and can get to you if you suddenly need help.
6) Head to the beach with friends.
Not only is it more fun, but it ensures there is someone to help you if you do get injured. Friends can help medics save your life by providing medical information and can ensure someone is looking out for you on the beach.
7) Stay hydrated and shaded to avoid sun-related injury.
Drownings and near drownings aren’t the only danger in southern Florida. Sun related injury, including but heatstroke severe burns, can be serious and even be life-threatening. Use shade and strong sunscreen to prevent sun-related injury and stay hydrated to ensure your body can cope with the heat.
If you have been injured on a beach in southern Florida, contact Flaxman Law Group for a free consultation with a free Hollywood persona injury lawyer. Whether you’re in the Hollywood area or visiting, our attorneys can help you review your rights. Our offices in Hollywood, Homestead, and Miami are open to serve you.