Tuesday 11th August 2020 - Is There A Solution?
Virtually every day we have read about some beach or sea related incident that has involved at least one of the emergency services. Amongst other things, there have been people cut off by the tides and most tragically a mother lost her life at Waxham trying to save her children. Yesterday the air ambulance passed over us before landing on the beach. This was hotly followed by emergency vehicles, sirens blaring. Later in the day, North Norfolk News reported that a woman in a serious condition was taken in the air ambulance to the Norfolk & Norwich hospital. According to the report, she had been in the sea and an onlooker said, they saw someone trying to resuscitate her.
This year has seen an exceptional number of incidents, but why? There has to be various contributing reasons. In my opinion it’s, the amazing weather drawing people to the beach, the number of holiday makers we are used to seeing has been swelled by those on furlough, staycations with day trips to the coast, and lack of knowledge of some of the perils presented by the sea, especially rip tides, winds, outgoing tides and using inflatables. We have also seen people sitting and pitching tents at the bottom of our cliffs which are prone to slumping. It would be unkind to say these people are acting stupidly but if they live inland how are they supposed to know about the dangers they could face? We could argue, it is down to the Councils to put up warning and advisory posters, but would they be read, probably not. We know from experience the dog restriction notices are not always adhered to and social distancing signs were torn down.
So is there a solution; probably not. I can only urge visitors to be careful, be aware that not all beaches have lifeguards (Overstrand is one), keep away from the bottom of the cliffs, don’t use inflatables, and one little extra comment, please don’t leave your rubbish on the beach where it will almost undoubtedly become a marine pollutant.
Today’s photo was taken yesterday on our beach walk with Barney. The droplets of sea water from the weed, adorning the groynes, had made crater patterns on the sand below. There’s always something interesting to see or find on the beach.