SURF life saving has ramped up its campaign to reduce the number of drownings at South Coast beaches this summer.
Last season two people drowned in Shoalhaven and one in Shellharbour.
Surf Lifesaving South Coast branch president Steve Jones said the campaign involved 6000 posters being distributed throughout the region.
“We are putting the message out there, to encourage the public to swim between the red and yellow flags,” Mr Jones said.
“Everyone who has seen it is talking about it. It seems to be quite affective.
“It copies our TV advertising where you see people moving around in the water between the flags and as they move past the flags they disappear.
“This campaign is about sending the message that surf lifesavers and life guards are focused on everyone within the flags and about 100 metres outside the flags.
“The posters were funded by Shoalhaven City Council’s Holiday Haven holiday parks to run when Shoalhaven’s population will blossom out to about half a million additional people,” he said.
Despite the public’s fear about things like sharks, the major hazard this summer will remain rip currents, by far the biggest danger along the coastline.
After a horror season last year with 47 coastal drowning in NSW, Surf Life Saving NSW lifesaving manager, Dean Storey, is urging people to make some simple safety decisions for themselves and their families this summer.
“Plan your day at the beach by choosing a patrolled location to swim at – Surf Life Saving has an easy to use website called beachsafe.org.au and free smartphone app, Beachsafe, to help,” Mr Storey said.
“We have more than 21,000 highly trained surf lifesavers ensuring the safety of beachgoers around the state.
“With rip currents at most beaches in NSW, if you are not swimming between the flags then you may be putting yourself and your family in danger,” he said.