alexa Beachgoers' beliefs and behaviours in relation to beach flags and rip currents.
Geology & Earth Science

Geology & Earth Science

Journal of Coastal Zone Management

Author(s): Sherker S, Williamson A, Hatfield J, Brander R, Hayen A

Abstract Share this page

Abstract BACKGROUND: Coastal drownings claim on average 82 people per year in Australia. Beach flags are a primary safety strategy used on beaches. They are located away from rip currents, which are the main beach hazard affecting swimmers. Little is known about the behavioural and motivational factors associated with people choosing where to swim in relation to flags and rips. AIMS: To assess the beliefs and behaviours of beachgoers in relation to beach flags and rip currents. METHODS: Beachgoers at beaches in NSW were interviewed about their swimming beliefs and behaviours. They were asked to indicate on pictures depicting beach scenarios involving beach flags and fixed rip currents, where they would and would not swim. Logistic regression analysis was undertaken to determine predictors of correct and incorrect swimming behaviour. RESULTS: Beachgoers who are aged from 30 to 49 years (OR 0.34, 95\% CI 0.16, 0.74, p=0.006) are less likely to choose to swim between the flags than other swimmers. In addition, beachgoers who are at the beach with children are significantly more likely to choose to swim between the flags (OR 2.74, 95\% CI 1.39, 5.40, p=0.004). Beachgoers with basic knowledge about rip currents are significantly more likely to swim away from the rip (OR 11.59, 95\% CI 5.89, 22.81, p<0.001). DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: Ocean swimmers aged from 30 to 49 years may choose to swim outside the flags, though they may not necessarily be swimming in the rip. Swimming outside of the flags may be linked with experience. The flags appear to be attractive to parents and carers of children. Whilst the flags indicate a relatively safe area of the beach, it is still vitally important for parents and carers to supervise children in this area. Basic rip current knowledge is an essential component in developing national interventions aimed at reducing coastal drowning. Beachgoers clearly need to know what a rip looks like in order to actively avoid swimming in it. 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. This article was published in Accid Anal Prev and referenced in Journal of Coastal Zone Management

Relevant Expert PPTs

Relevant Speaker PPTs

Recommended Conferences

Peer Reviewed Journals
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700 + peer reviewed, Open Access Journals
International Conferences 2017-18
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Annual Meetings

Contact Us

© 2008-2017 OMICS International - Open Access Publisher. Best viewed in Mozilla Firefox | Google Chrome | Above IE 7.0 version