News Flash

Health - Public Health News

Posted on: July 31, 2020

Cooling off carefully: Safe water recreation

Summer is here, and it is a hot one! Many of us are enjoying staycations this summer rather than travelling, and our waterfronts are getting crowded with people trying to beat the heat. Cooling off at one of our beautiful beaches always feels great. But we need to remember to keep ourselves safe while at the beach.

General Water Safety

Swimming and water recreation are wonderful activities for summertime, but it’s important to enjoy them safely. While at the beach or in the water, remember to:

  • Supervise children while they’re in the water.
  • Stay hydrated, and bring plenty of water with you.
  • Wear sunscreen, and reapply frequently.
  • Never swim alone. Swimmers should always have a buddy with them while in the water.
  • Stay within designated swimming areas. Designated swimming areas are safer from dangerous terrain and boats.

COVID-19 Safety

Gathering with friends at the beach is a quintessential summer activity. But COVID-19 cases around the state and county are still on the rise and Whatcom County is still in Phase 2 of the Safe Start reopening plan. If you are planning on heading to the beach this summer, remember to:

  • Keep your group size small, to no more than 5 people outside of your household per week.
  • Wear a mask, especially while using the restroom or other interior space and when six-feet of physical distance can’t be maintained.
  • Spread out. Keep a minimum of six feet between yourselves and other groups.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Don’t share food or drinks.

If you are heading to the beach and it’s too crowded, try and find a different spot or go at a different time. Being outdoors is safer than gathering inside, but crowded areas can provide more opportunities for the virus to spread, so it’s best to avoid them if possible. It’s also a good idea to keep your visits brief, and recreation-focused. Walking along the beach or in the park, or swimming or wading will keep you moving, making it less easy to transmit the virus. 

Summer in Whatcom County is incredible and we have some of the most beautiful beaches. We can keep our beaches safe and open by practicing healthy habits. Let’s all do our part to keep ourselves and others safe while we enjoy them.

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