Safety Tool-Kit

Safety at sites is important to visitors and management. Staff has compiled resources for communities on best practices and criteria compliance. 

Best Practices

Rip Currents

The United States Lifesaving Association and NOAA have worked together on rip current signage which identifies how to react when caught in a rip current. For access to rip current brochures and signs in English and Spanish, visit the: 

 USLA Rip Current Page

NWS Rip Current Tool-kit

Beach Profiles

Each site, even along the same shore, can have different profiles above and below the water due to multiple factors. Visitors from nearby beaches or inland locations may not be aware of the characteristics as intimately as locals. In Mexico, each site displays a profile on their security panel as a part of their information board. 


USLA Certification

The International Blue Flag Criteria indicate sites must use lifeguards if they experience a visitor volume of over 50 people a day in a four-week period in the high season. National working groups on safety request these agencies in addition be USLA certified.  

More information about the USLA process can be found on their website: certification.

It is important to note the USLA deadlines in relation to the Blue Flag application deadlines. Applicants need to be USLA certified at the time of applying for the Blue Flag award. USLA accepts applications all year round but only approves them at Board Meetings in April or October/November. Please reach out to staff to discuss how these dates may affect your application timeline. 

Safety Questionnaire

Safety can be affected by many characteristics of a beach. Please fill out the Safety Questionnaire to give staff an idea about compliance before application. This snapshot of safety gives candidates a qualitative space to fill out safety information versus the USLA or Blue Flag applications which have more rigid and predefined questions. If you have safety and service best practices to share, please let staff know. 

Safety Workshop

Below you will find the workshop slides, recording, and criteria report. 


After watching the workshop above, download and fill out the workshop report to determine any next steps or decision points you may need to make as a community.