Australia is cherished for its beautiful beaches, ultra white sand as well as crystal clear water. These beaches can reward you with an unforgettable experience. As summer approaches in Australia, millions of tourists from all over the world are prepping to do what they do best — head to the beaches! Before you head down the beach in Australia, be sure to follow some simple rules as beaches conceal many dangers. We are not trying to frighten you, but we want you to be safe while on your vacation. Featured below are a few tips on how to stay safe when visiting beaches in Australia.

Swim at patrolled beaches

No matter how attractive waves may be, don’t be tempted to swim at an unpatrolled beach. Beaches in Australia are patrolled all year-round for good reasons. Before you head down the beach, be sure to read the safety signs. These signs tell visitors about the condition of the beach and contain any dangers and warnings including rough surf, strong currents and submerged rocks. If you travel around Australia, you will realize that some beaches are unpatrolled. Realize that these beaches are dangerous and must only be enjoyed from the sand.

Always obey beach signs

A beach can be closed for a number of reasons. It may not be apparent why a beach is closed but if it’s closed, don’t disregard the signs otherwise you may later get to find out why it was closed. If the signs say the beach is open, swim between the red and yellow flags as they mark the safest area for swimming. These flags are put at places that don’t pose much of a risk to swimmers. If you are on a beach that’s being patrolled by lifeguards, ask them about any specific things you should be aware of.

Watch out for rips

Rips are common in almost all Australian beaches. Rip currents are strong channels of water near the shore that flow away from the beach. They are difficult to spot, and even worse, they can race at dizzying speeds of up to 8 feet per second. Rips always disperse past the breakers, so if you are a good swimmer you can swim back to the shore. Should you need help from the lifeguards, raise one hand in the air and the life savers will come to your rescue.

Don’t swim alone

Accidents occur when we least expect. Therefore, it is advised to swim with a friend so you can keep an eye on one another. If one of you needs help, there is always someone who can offer help or call for help. Children must be supervised by their parents at all times while playing and must be accompanied in the waters by responsible adults. Also, don’t dive into the water, no matter how deep it may look. Some sand bars can be anywhere from a few feet, to 30 feet or more so don’t be tempted to dive.

There you have it, tips on how to stay safe while on Australian beaches. If you feel yourself being swept away by the rips or find yourself in deep water, raise your hand up in the air and a lifesaver will come to your rescue.