If you’re heading to the beach this summer, follow these handy tips from the RNLI to keep yourself and your little ones safe at the seaside!

1. Sun Safety


Sunburn can ruin your holiday and increase the risk of skin cancer in later life. According to our friends at the Karen Clifford Skin Cancer Charity Skcin, we experience over half our lifetime’s exposure to the sun before we reach the age of 21.

So please, keep safe this Summer and follow the five Ss of sun safety:

Sunscreen – slop on SPF 30+ broad-spectrum waterproof sunscreen every 2 hours
Sun hat – slap on a broad-brimmed hat that shades your face, neck and ears
Sunglasses – wear wrap-around sunglasses with UV protection to shield your eyes
Shoulders – slip on a T-shirt or UV protective suit for children and remember to keep your shoulders covered
Shade – seek shade, particularly during the hottest time of the day between 11am and 3pm when UV penetration is at its strongest.

Remember children are especially vulnerable to the sun!

2. Before taking a dip…

Before you get in the water it’s important to consider your personal fitness as the sea can be a very demanding environment. Swimming is one of the best year-round activities to help prepare your body so we’d recommend you get in the pool and start practising now!

Get to know the sea and spot ‘danger areas’ such as rip currentsstrong tides and waves before getting in! Never leave a child to paddle in the sea unsupervised!

Even during the summer, the sea can be deceivingly cold. Any sea temperature under 15 degrees celsius is classed as ‘cold water’. Find out what to do about cold water shock and how to prevent it here.

3. Bodyboarding and Inflatables

Blow-up toys and airbeds are designed for pools, not the sea where they can easily be swept out. If you do use them at the beach, then:

  • Ensure children are closely supervised
  • Keep near the shore
  • Only use between the red and yellow flags
  • Do not take out in big waves

Bodyboarding is fun for all the family, but every year our lifeguards rescue thousands of people who get caught out. The most important advice is to always stay with your board as it will keep you above the water, even if you feel you are drifting out to sea.

Your board will keep you afloat and make you much easier to spot if our lifeguards need to rescue you.

  • Follow the advice of the lifeguards
  • Wear your leash so you don’t lose your board
  • Check your equipment for damage before use
  • Consider other water users.

4. Have fun!

A day at the beach can be great fun for the whole family – have a great time and follow these tips for a safe day out!