By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
DOWNBEACH – Labor Day means the end of the regular summer season, but residents and visitors can still enjoy the sun and surf through the month of September – the month the locals call the best month at the shore. The weather is usually slightly cooler, but the water temperatures are still warm for swimming.
Although residents and visitors can enjoy a less crowded beach, it becomes even more imperative to swim safely as fewer lifeguards are on duty.
Beach patrol chiefs encourage everyone to heed the following advice to avoid becoming a victim:
- Always swim near a lifeguard
- Never swim alone
- Obey any surf warnings
- Obey lifeguard instructions
- Don’t fight the current – learn how to swim out of a rip current
- Avoid alcohol and drugs when swimming in the ocean
- Always wear sunscreen
- If you see someone in trouble, notify a lifeguard or call 911
And the most important advice of all – swim only at these guarded beaches:
The Ventnor City Beach Patrol will guard the following beaches 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day from Sept. 8-20 and Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 26-27: Dorset, Lafayette, New Haven and Suffolk avenues.
The Margate Beach Patrol has suspended its after-hours coverage (6-8 p.m.). The following beaches will be guarded 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 8-13: Clermont, Huntington, Thurlow and Washington avenues. Sept. 14-20: Brunswick (Clermont), Huntington and Washington avenues. If the Beach Season is extended beyond Sept. 20 appropriate notifications will be made to assure that everyone is aware of guarded bathing beaches.
Margate beachgoers are advised to avoid swimming or surfing near outfall pipes or structures along the beach. These are hazardous areas and you could be sucked into or under them in the blink of an eye. Margate has had four rescue incidents involving surfers near the outfall pipes.
The Longport Beach Patrol will guard the following beaches 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 8-13: 33rd, 31st, 30th, 26th and 16th avenues. The following beaches will be guarded Sept. 14-20: 33rd, 30th, 26th and 16th avenues. The following beaches will be guarded Sept. 26-27: 33rd, 30th, 26th and 16th avenues.
Editor’s Note: This has been revised to include coverage and warnings for Margate beaches.