Safety Advice


* Credit for the content of this page to theRLSS

Over 700 people drown in the UK and Ireland every year and many more suffer injury, some life-changing, through non-fatal experiences. More people die from drowning in the UK and Ireland than from domestic fires or cycling accidents.

Visiting the coast can be great fun, from cliff walking, swimming or just relaxing at the beach. To get the most out of your trip, have fun, and stay safe, make sure you check the weather and tides before heading out, wear appropriate footwear and clothing for your activity, know the sea conditions and stick to coastal paths. Also, make sure you tell someone where you are going and when you will be back.

If You See

Someone in Danger

Dial #999

Ask for Coastguard

Top 10 beach safety tips

Don't put yourself

in danger

Dial #999

Ask for Coastguard

Rip Currents

Definition — Rip currents are currents of water typically flowing from the shoreline back out to sea. They are commonly formed by a build-up of water on the beached caused by wave and tidal motion but can also form where an estuary runs into the sea.

How to Escape

Beach Dangers

When you visit the beach, make sure it is a life-guarded beach and that you swim between the flags (find out more on safety flags on the RLSS website). Always make sure you keep an eye on children and ask your beach if they have a local wristband scheme which helps identify children if they wander off

Check Tide Times

Carry means to

Call for Help


In the UK tides are relatively regular and predictable, yet despite this fact every year a number of people are caught out by rapidly rising water and end up being trapped in isolated bays. If you intend to venture across any beach or bank affected by tidal water, make sure you know when the incoming tide is expected and know where all the exits are.

Be Aware of

Sun Stoke or Burn

Carry Sunscreen


British beach flag signs

It must be remembered that beach flag systems are different across the world. However, current discussions are taking place to hopefully co-ordinate the flags for the future.


Don’t go into the water

Red half over yellow
Lifeguarded area — swim between the flags

Orange wind sock
Shows the direction of the wind. If the wind is blowing out to sea do not go into the water on an inflatable (NB Advice is never to go into the sea on an inflatable)

Black and white quarters
Surfing area, swimmers keep out

Red and white quarters
Shark warning (unusual in this country)

Enjoy our