“BEach SAFEly” Campaign – NJSGC’s Rapid Response to COVID-19

JULY 2020: This summer, New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium (NJSGC) and New York Sea Grant (NYSG) want you to enjoy the BEach SAFEly!

COVID-19 brings more considerations beyond the usual “beach safety and ocean hazards” messaging. Starting this month and continuing into September, our Sea Grant programs will debut a new social media graphic each week to remind beachgoers to stay safe while still having fun at the Jersey Shore and beyond!

For more information, please visit the NYSG “BEach SAFEly” homepage.

Week 1: Stay Social, Be Distant! | English PDF | Spanish PDF

This summer, the beaches are open and you should enjoy them! Just remember that you still need to practice social distancing – embrace your personal space.

Stay at least 6 feet apart from other beachgoers that you didn’t come with; this is about the average length of a surfboard, two boogie boards, a bit more than an beach towel length, or three beach chairs – you could even measure based on your beach umbrella pole!

When you’re walking around the beach, to and from the parking lot or other facilities, or if you can’t stay more than 6 feet apart from others, remember to wear your mask. Frequently wash or sanitize your hands – and if you feel sick, stay home.

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Week 2: Break the Grip of the Rip! | English PDF | Spanish PDF

Rip currents are one of the deadliest beach hazards. They occur as ocean water moves swiftly away from the shore.

If caught in a rip, the most important thing is to remain calm! Wave or call for help, “flip” onto your back and “float” rather than fighting against the current, and “follow” as it takes you to calmer waters where it dissipates and you can swim safely to shore.

If you notice someone else in danger, do not try to save them yourselves. Instead, maintain visual contact with the victim and send another beachgoer to get help, find a lifeguard, or call 9-1-1.

Find more information and material on NJSGC’s Rip Current Awareness webpage.

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Week 3: Shoreline Rescue | English PDF | Spanish PDF


Many rescuers often become victims themselves, so if you notice someone in the water who needs assistance, follow these steps to help them while still staying safe yourself!

Act quickly, maintain sight of the victim, call for help or send someone else to get help, and (if possible) throw a floatable to them.

Common beach items that float include life jackets, coolers, boogie boards, surfboards, or pool toys.

Remember to enjoy the beach safely this summer by (1) avoiding physical contact with others (outside of those who you came with); (2) bringing and wearing your mask when you’re not sitting on your towel or in the water; (3) washing your hands; and (4) if you feel sick, stay home!

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Week 4: Grab your sunscreen and sanitizer! | English PDF | Spanish PDF

The sun emits ultraviolet (UV) rays which are powerful enough to damage your skin and result in sunburn. The National Weather Service (NWS) issues a daily UV Index, a number ranging from 0-10; the higher the number, the greater amount of skin damaging UV radiation. Make sure to check this number and the appropriate protective actions before you spend a day outside.

When you do go outside, use a broad spectrum sunscreen to protect against UV rays, which contribute to premature aging, sunburn, and skin cancer. Apply generously and reapply every two hours and/or when you get out of the water.

This summer, in addition to protecting yourself from the sun, remember to protect yourself from COVID-19. Don’t forget to bring any extra safety precautions such as your mask, which should be worn when you can’t social distance, and plenty of hand sanitizer to apply often.

To increase effectiveness, your hand sanitizer should be at least 60% alcohol and wipe any sand or sunscreen off before applying.

Remember to enjoy the beach safely this summer by (1) avoiding physical contact with others (outside of those who you came with); (2) bringing and wearing your mask when you’re not sitting on your towel or in the water; (3) washing your hands; and (4) if you feel sick, stay home!

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Week 5 Coming Soon!