Stay safe in the ocean
The oceans around northern Australia are home to some of the world’s most spectacular marine life. This includes marine stingers some of which are dangerous, most famously the box jellyfish and Irukandji. These can be found around Tropical North Queensland along the coast as far south as Gladstone, from around October/ November to May/ June.
Many popular beaches have stinger nets patrolled by lifeguards in place so you can swim safely. However, it’s recommended you wear a protective suit to help shield you from the sun and to minimise the risk of jellyfish stings.
On patrolled beaches, lifeguards conduct daily checks for jellyfish prior to putting out the flags. Always follow advice from lifeguards on duty and it’s a good idea to check with them directly if you’re unsure about anything.
If you do happen to get stung, don’t panic. Wash the site thoroughly with vinegar (you’ll find a bottle on most beaches) and pull off any remaining tentacles, ensuring your fingers and hands are protected. See the lifeguards for assistance or call Triple 000 in an emergency.
The most important advice is not to be afraid of swimming at Tropical North Queensland’s gorgeous beaches. Fatal stings are very rare and it’s easy to stay safe by following these simple precautions. Current local beach conditions can be found on the Surf Life Saving North Queensland website.