Enjoy our Beaches Safely & Be Aware of Rip Currents

RIP CUrrents

Ventura City Fire reminds beachgoers to safely enjoy our beaches. According to the United States Lifesaving Association, rip currents account for more than 80 percent of rescues performed by beach lifeguards. Rip currents are powerful, channeled currents of water flowing away from the shore – typically found near coastal structures such as jetties and piers.

Follow these safety precautions to stay safe: learn to swim, swim near a lifeguard, never swim alone, swim sober and don’t fight the rip current. When caught in a rip current, first swim out of the current in a direction following the shoreline. When you are out of the rip current, swim towards the shore (see illustration).

Swim Where It’s safe: Daily lifeguard services began Memorial Day weekend at all Ventura Harbor beaches off of Spinnaker Drive, funded by the Ventura Port District, which contracts with California State Parks. Services are provided through Labor Day weekend. Harbor Cove will have a daily lifeguard from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. and the South Beach/Surfer’s Knoll area will have a lifeguard from 11 a.m. to 7:45 p.m. daily.

For more ocean safety tips and rip current information, visit the United States Lifesaving Association at www.usla.org.

From Ventura Water’s June 2016 Pipeline

SAVE THE DATE: September 21, 2013, 9:00am-Noon, The 29th Annual Coastal Cleanup Day NEEDS YOU!

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Historically, California’s coast and waterways have been collection spots for trash and debris.  It’s important to remove all litter, which can be harmful, even fatal to marine wildlife.

How does this happen?

Let’s look at some specific examples starting with plastic in the water.  Marine life can get caught in the debris and also consume it.  Plastic bags found in ocean debris, is not biodegradable. It photodegrades, which means it breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, but it does not go away. These small pieces absorb oil and other toxins that may be in the water, making them saturated in chemicals. Plankton feeders ingest these small pieces, along with their normal food sources.  In some areas of the ocean, the ratio of plastic to plankton is 10 to 1!  In addition to impacting the marine creature that eats the plastic, plastic may cause genetic mutations that can impact future generations. Fish eat other fish with some working up the food chain all the way to human consumption. Think what this means to humans who ingest fish!

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Broken glass, sharp metal items or discarded syringes can pose an immediate threat to those walking on the beach or swimming in the water, as do medical and personal hygiene debris, pet waste, fertilizer and pesticide runoff that get into the water through stormdrains.

Where does marine debris come from?

The majority originates on land with approximately 20% coming from commercial and recreational vessels and offshore petroleum platforms — litter discarded miles from the shoreline that eventually find their way to our beaches, trash that makes its way into the untreated stormdrain system washing up on our shores.  It’s important to note that all these sources are preventable when people choose not to litter.

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Statistics from last year’s cleanup

Tens of thousands of people turned up to pick up trash at over 850 sites in 55 of California’s 58 counties.  In a preliminary report from the California Coastal Commission with 70% of the cleanup sites reporting:

57,442 volunteers picked up 534,115 pounds of trash and an additional 105,816 pounds of recyclable materials for a total of 639, 930 pounds or 320 tons!

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Make it a FUN day for the entire family

Traditionally, the Cleanup Day has been a great activity for families, students, individuals, and service groups to do something positive for the community where we all live.  “It’s a fantastic way to make friends, set an example for young people and participate in an event that really makes a difference,” said City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Courtney Lindberg.

imagesFor the cleanup, it is suggested to come prepared for the weather (hat, shoes, sunscreen, reusable water bottle, sunglasses, etc.). The cleanup asks volunteers to help reduce waste by bringing your own container for collecting trash, such as a reusable bucket, a milk jug with the top cut off, or a reused shopping bag as well as work gloves and a reusable water bottle. However, bags, gloves, data cards, pencils, etc., will be available and provided on site.

Participate in Coastal Cleanup Day, Watch For Signup information coming soon at:  http://www.CityofVentura.net/VolunteerOpportunities

Also visit the California Coastal Cleanup Day website, HERE.

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GREEN REMINDER:  Anytime you see litter anywhere, please pick it up!  Help Keep our home and our waterways safe, beautiful and clean.

 

Water Safety Tips for Young Children

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Wherever there is water — at the beach, around pools, ponds, creeks, rivers, water features, and even your bathtub at home — It’s important to watch young children. 

Here are some water safety tips to review for a safe and secure summer!

Outside

•Don’t leave young children around any body of water  – EVER.

•Young children playing near a pool or in water at the beach need an adult or certified lifeguard watching them at all times.  A good rule of thumb is to have the child within reach.  If there are many adults and children around, have ONE assigned to a particular child.

•Secure swimming pools and hot tubs.  Use fences and self clothing or latched gates.

•When the pool is in use, completely remove the cover.

•Store all toys away from the water when not in use.

•Always have emergency phone numbers handy in case there is a situation.

•Know your neighborhood and find out if your neighbors or child’s friends homes have pools.  Have conversations to ensure your child’s safety.

Inside

•Never leave a small child alone where there’s water — toilets, tubs, aquariums, mop buckets, water fountain features, etc.

•When you have small children at home, bathroom doors should be kept closed.  Toilets can be secured with lid locks.

•Never leave a baby alone in the bath.  Before you run the tub, make sure you have everything you need for the baby’s bath at hand.  If you need to leave the bath, always take the baby with you.

•Make sure you have a talk with babysitters or caregivers about water safety.

•Many young children have gotten into trouble leaving the house through a pet door and have reached hot tubs and pools.  Make sure there are no open windows, doors or openings to these areas that are unlocked or open.

Visit:  VenturaWater.net and VenturaWater.org

Pool SAFELY for Summer: Tips to Keep Children Safe by the Pool and Spa

 

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The American Academy of Pediatrics  (AAP) recommends the following when it comes to children’s pool safety!

Pool Safety

•NEVER (not even for a moment)  leave children alone or near a pool or spa

•Whenever infants or toddlers are around water, an adult who knows CPR and how to swim, should be within arm’s length

•Install a fence at least 4 feet high around all four sides of the pool.  The fence should not have openings or protrusions that a child can gt over, under or through.

•Make sure pool gates open out from the pool and self-close and self-latch at a height children can’t reach.

•If the house serves as a fourth side of a fence surrounding a pool, make sure an alarm or charm is on the door.

Be aware that drowning victims have also used open windows and pet doors to gain access to pools.

•Keep rescue equipment close by (a shepherd’s hook made of fiberglass –  a long pole with a hook on the end) and life preservers as well as a portable telephone near the pool.

•Avoid inflatable swimming aids such as “floaties.”  They are not a substitute for approved life vests.

•Children ages 1 to 4 may be at a lower risk of drowning if they have had some formal swimming instruction.

•Avoid entrapment:  Suction from pool and spa drains can trap a swimmer underwater.  Do not use a pool or spa if there are broken or missing drain covers.  Ask your pool operator if your pool or spa drains are compliant wit the Pool and Spa Safety Act.  If you have a pool or spa, ask your pool service representative to check and/or update your drains and other suction fitting with anti-entrapment drain covers.  Visit:  PoolSafely.gov

•For above the ground pools – Children may fall in if they lean against the soft side of an inflatable pool.  Although fences are not required, it is important to install them around inflatable pools just as one would a permanent pool so that unsupervised children can not get access.

•If a child is missing, look for them in a pool or spa first.

•Share these tips with friends and family.

Visit:  VenturaWater.net and VenturaWater.org