22 Nov Summertime in Oz
As an island continent, summers at the beach are part of Australia’s national identity. It is integral to our way of life and as summer beckons we are digging out our swimsuits and heading to our summer playground to indulge our aquatic lifestyle
With most of our urban development concentrated near the coast, every weekend during the summer sees a mass exodus to cavort in the turquoise water, ride the waves, enjoy a family picnic or simply relax on the golden sand.
The image is idyllic but there are some fundamental safety precautions to observe. Foremost, is sun safety. Before venturing into the sunshine, SLIP on a shirt, SLOP on some sunscreen at least fifteen minutes before going out into the sun and SLAP on a hat. Sunglasses are advised, also and drink plenty of water. Avoid being in the sun between 10.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. Even on overcast days, you can burn really quickly and Australia has the dubious reputation of having the highest incidence of melanoma in the world. Only swim at a beach patrolled by lifeguards. Never swim alone and ALWAYS swim between the red and yellow flags.
Also, be aware that, while the water and the waves are enticing, they can be deceptive. Undercurrents and rips can be treacherous – particularly so early in the season. Rips occur in deeper water so it is usually darker than the white water of the waves rolling into the beach and because the water is deeper, there will be fewer breaking waves, giving the appearance that the water is safe. The red and yellow flags mark the safe swimming area but if you are unsure ask the lifeguards.
Our iconic beaches welcome you but before you join the locals do some research. Knowledge of beach safety is essential – we want you to enjoy our free and relaxed lifestyle but your safety is our priority.
As always remember our team of friendly migration agents are on hand with help and advice to guide you through the pathways to join us in this land of Oz at http://www.tig.net.au.