School holiday safety in seaside national parks
With the NSW summer school holidays kicking off, all swimmers and beachgoers are urged to stay safe when cooling down in a NSW national park.
The summer holidays are by far the busiest time in all of New South Wales's coastal national parks, and being safe around beaches and waterways can be the difference between life and death.
The vast majority of beaches in national parks are remote and unpatrolled.
Many do not have mobile phone reception and it may take time for help to arrive.
This summer the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and Surf Life Saving Australia are calling on beachgoers to keep water safety top of mind, and go to beachsafe.org.au for helpful resources on how to stay safe including how to spot a rip.
Before you rush into the water, stop and check for hazards such as large waves, rips, changing water depths and rocks.
The safest place to swim is at a patrolled beach, between the flags.
New South Wales's national parks are also home to some spectacular waterfalls and waterways, and the same warnings are in place. Visitors must adhere to all safety signage, take care around steep cliffs, unstable surfaces and loose and slippery rocks.
Quotes attributable to Deon Van Rensburg, NPWS Executive Director:
"We are expecting up to 20 million visits to NSW national parks this summer and remind everyone that parks are inherently wild and rugged landscapes.
"We love that so many people want to spend their summer in our parks, and with your help everyone can return home to loved ones.
"National park visitors have suffered life changing injuries or died near dangerous waterways or in dangerous surf when they ignore warnings. Know what to do if something goes wrong."