Vero Beach Lifeguard Association Monthly Beach Report For February 2020

Jaycee Park / Humiston Park / South Beach Park

Our Mission:

To promote lifeguarding and water safety in Vero Beach and the surrounding communities

Email:  VeroBeachLA@Yahoo.com  

Website:  www.VBLA.org

STATISTICS
Total Park Attendance71,645
Preventative Actions979
Minor Medicals16
Major Medicals3
Rescues4
Average Water Temperature68
Beach ErosionModerate
Stinging Marine LifeModerate

General Conditions

February monthly beach attendance was robust but not in record territory (the record was set in February 2018 with 97,000) mainly due to cool temperatures and the beach renourishment project along Central Beach.  Lifeguards responded to 19 medical emergencies which included 3 major medical emergencies. Two of the three major medical emergencies occurred due to strong reactions to Portuguese Man O War stings. In each case, the patient was transported to the hospital for higher level of care.  There were 4 water rescues all at South Beach Park. In each incident, strong rip currents were to blame. Larger swells and strong currents carved out some parts of the dune along the shoreline. Many surfcasting fisherman were posted along the shoreline especially near South Beach Park.  The ocean water temperature continued to hover in the upper 60’s.   

Beach Raker Inc, the subcontractor the City of Vero Beach hired to groom our beaches is doing and excellent job.  Some may argue too good of a job because once sea turtle nesting season is in full swing, beach grooming will cease.  Some patrons may start complaining about the amount of seaweed on the beach. Seaweed is a natural occurrence and part of a healthy beach ecology.  Removal of the seaweed may weaken the beach’s foundation, prevent the formation of protective dunes, increase beach erosion and may damage sea turtle nests.   

All swimmers are advised to pay close attention to beach condition signs and flags, swim near lifeguard towers and avoid swimming during non-guarded hours.

Areas of Progress

With help from Idea Garden, Waldo’s, Minuteman Press, Coastal Technology Corporation, Hoos Architects, Mills Short Engineers, Farrow Construction, City of Vero Beach Recreation Department, and City Council, VBLA’s goal of giving our lifeguards the ability to see more of the beach and react to emergencies faster by building a lifeguard tower and command center at Humiston Park is progressing.  We are actively seeking a donor for the project.  

Areas of Concern

Whenever beaches are closed due to large surf, sharks or other emergencies, it is strongly advised that the public stay out of the water due to the dangerous conditions or the absence of lifeguards.                       

Key

Park Attendance: an estimated count of park attendees to include boardwalks within each park and areas immediately north and south of each park

Preventative Actions:  stopping potential incidents before they occur

Minor Medicals:  a medical incident which is treated on-site by lifeguard/EMT         personnel

Major Medicals:  a medical incident that required Emergency Medical Services

Rescues:  Any water related emergency to include rip current rescues, fatigued       swimmers, surfing, kite boarding and/or boating accidents.

About VBLAThis report is furnished by the Vero Beach Lifeguard Association, a non-profit, 501C3 organization.  Its mission is to promote water safety and lifeguarding in Vero Beach and the surrounding communities.  Contact us at VeroBeachLA@Yahoo.com or (908)797-8725.  Visit us at www.VBLA.org.  Donations are appreciated.  Monies raised are used to purchase equipment, supplies, and training for the lifeguards from the city of Vero Beach.  Please send donations to: VBLA, 1351 White Heron Lane, Vero Beach, FL 32963.

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Nikki Kalin
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