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Here’s an overview of what the color of the flag mean when you are oversea.
Here’s the beach flag and what they mean in other countries.
- No child should swim without a strong swimmer present.
- When there are children around, pools must be fenced in with a safety gate, and a good quality SABS approved pool net or cover is mandatory and well worth the expense. Just because you have a pool net however you should still never allow young children to play unaccompanied around the pool as drowning can still happen.
- Ban running around the pool even if it makes you unpopular. Nasty accidents can happen on slippery poolsides. You may also want to insist that everyone wear non-slip shoes near the pool. This is especially important for elderly or frail family members.
- If you young children have not yet learned to swim they should always enter the pool or other body of water with a good quality swim aid such as arm bands.
- Apart from whisky and water, alcohol and water don’t mix well – no one who has been drinking should swim – every year people drown in our oceans after drinking too much alcohol.
- No-one should swim within 20 minutes of eating.
- Be aware that floatation toys such as boats and lilos can quickly float away from the shore at beaches and dams.
- Anyone on a boat who cannot swim needs to wear a life jacket in case they get into trouble while on the water.
- Be sure to have sufficient shade and sunscreen when spending time in the sun. Avoid full sun during the hours between 10 and 4 each day.
- Always have a first aid kit to treat bluebottle or jellyfish stings at the beach, and scrapes and falls on the rocks.
- Don’t swim at any beach where no lifesavers are present.
- Don’t dive into any water where you cannot clearly see the bottom or where you are not personally sure of the water depth.
Before you go:
- Check the safety arrangements in advance
- Teach children never to swim alone
- Take a first aid course – know how to resuscitate a child
- Ask your travel company if the hotel pool has a lifeguard
When you are there:
- Actively supervise all young children near water
- Choose pools that are fenced with locking gates
- Even if a pool has a lifeguard – know where your children are, and what they are doing in the water
- Let children take swimming classes whilst on holiday – they are a great way of gaining water confidence and learning essential water safety skills
- Inflatables are not a substitute for supervision or swimming ability
Rules for children:
- Water safety rules for children
- Never swim alone
- Do not dive into unknown depths of water, and only jump feet first into water
- Do not push or jump onto others
- Know where to get help in an emergency