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Beach Safety is No Joke

Kauai is notorious for it’s crazy riptides — they took a Polish tourist on August 29th and every year, there are terrible tragedies as beach goers get swept out to sea. It’s not just about being a good swimmer, it’s about awareness of the dangers of the sea and the surf.

Kauai Beach Explorer is one of the best sites I’ve seen for educating visitors about beach safety. Back when I was working on my little guidebook, I spoke with one of Kauai Beach Explorer’s editors — they pleaded with me to include a section on safety, peppering me with stories about recently married brides watching their grooms get swept away or family members standing by helplessly when one of the kids disappeared. On our last visit to Kauai, the rental place declined to set us up with snorkel gear because the surf was doing something dangerous and was predicted to do so for the next few days. I didn’t get to see the fish, but hey, I got to live another day. For that, I say thank you, Kauai snorkel gear rental place.

It’s almost too awful to think about, but denial is not the solution. Read up, don’t swim alone, ask about the conditions and act upon that information, visit beaches with lifeguards, and pay attention. Better to stay dry than, oh, the worst case alternatives are too heartbreaking to bear.

One Comment

  1. I’ll be in Kauai at the end of September. I love to snorkel, so I will keep your beach safety comments in the back of my mind. Mahalo.