Beach Safety​

Swim ​between the flags​

Only swim bet​ween the red and yellow flags at the beach

The red and yellow flags indicate the safest place to swim when lifeguards and lifesavers patrol beaches

Swim between the flags

  • Always swim at patrolled beaches
  • Swim between the red and yellow flags. They mark the safer area for swimming
  • Never swim, surf or fish alone
  • Read and obey the signs
  • Be aware of rip currents (know how to spot one and how to escape from one)
  • Don't swim under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Never run or dive in the water, even if you have checked before as water conditions can change
  • If in doubt stay out
  • Seek advice from the lifesavers and lifeguards

Find out more about beach safety.


A rip is an intermittent strong surface current flowing seaward from the shore.

Water safety experts provide advice on exactly what a rip is, how a rip behaves, how to recognise a rip and what to do if you are caught in a rip.

Different experts have different opinions about the best way to get out of a rip.

For information on surf safety and rips visit these sites:


Surf Educators International

SEA Australia

Most impo​​​rtantly

  • Avoid a rip first - always swim between the red and yellow flags
  • Don't swim alone
  • Stay calm, stay afloat and signal for help by raising an arm


SharkSmart is a statewide Department of Primary Industries information campaign to help swimmers, surfers and other water users in NSW be aware of how they can minimise the risk of being in waters where sharks may be present.
More information on shark safety can be found at SharkSmart.