Here are the need to know and must adhere summer safety rules in Monmouth County, NJ
Before you go out and do anything this week, weekend or at any point in the summer in Monmouth County, be sure to read over and adhere to these safety rules.
Beach Safety in Monmouth County and the Jersey Shore:
There was a tragic trend of drownings during the ladder part of the spring in pools, lakes, and at beaches with many swimming with no lifeguards present and/or after hours.
Officials everywhere have been pushing the message of awareness and reminders of safety precautions so that everyone can have a happy and healthy summer.
It's important to listen to law enforcement and authorities for everyone's well being.
"Every year, unfortunately, we run into this. This year it does seem exacerbated by the over 10 drownings that we've had in the state of New Jersey -- some on the beaches, some inland and in the pool and a lake -- those are unfortunate and we continue to get the message out every year, it's important for our residents and visitors at the Jersey Shore with the height of tourism season, particularly as the weather begins to break in May, there are a lot of unguarded beaches still," Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden tells Townsquare Media News. "It is important that each one of our residents and our visitors know their surroundings and know if the beaches are guarded or not. We're a very parochial state, we have a lot of local control, which is great, however, all different local rules apply. Our best recommendation is that if it's an unguarded beach, don't attempt to swim."
If you're unsure of something including the conditions when you go to the beach, check with the lifeguards on staff, even if you think you know, double check so you're not going out in water or a distance that's unsafe.
"Check with the lifeguards, that's what they're there for. You want to check on the conditions -- just the change of a wind direction can change the conditions on the surf, so, if you have a wind direction change, you may have went in the water and are doing pretty well and then all of the sudden, there's a wind direction change and now the swells are a little bit rough or we have some rip currents," Golden said. "Lifeguards can detect those so if you're asking the lifeguards, they will steer you away from those rip currents."
Drinking on the beach, pop up parties at the Jersey Shore, intoxicated/drug influenced behavior:
Many local towns have put ordinances on the books regarding what you can and can't bring onto the beach, particularly as it pertains to alcohol, but they've also, along with county leaders, have also reminded residents that there is no smoking on the beach or boardwalk which obviously includes Marijuana.
"The one underlying thing we want to get across, particularly in the wake of the legalization of recreational Marijuana, is that a lot of beaches are no-smoking and there's a lot of boardwalks that are no-smoking, so you want to adhere to those smoking ordinances because if it states 'No Smoking', that doesn't just mean cigarettes, that means Marijuana as well," Golden said.
In the wake of pop-up parties or planned pop-up parties this year and over the last couple of years, local governing bodies and law enforcement has been on a high alert to prevent these massive, illegal, disruptive, and dangerous gatherings.
"We saw large gatherings, also known as 'pop-up parties', I like to call them 'flash mobs' because when you inject alcohol and/or drugs and marijuana with bad behavior, it's a mob, it's not a pop-up party per-say, it becomes a mob scene," Golden said. "We'll continue to monitor those flash parties as they occur up and down the Jersey Shore. We've seen this over the last couple of years. Last year in Long Branch was probably worse than the last one that we had a couple of weeks ago in Long Branch. I think we learned from some of it in terms of how to position officers and how to ramp up and certainly plan for those events. Long Branch did the right thing here in going after the organizers, civilly, and I think the county will as well because if you're creating those invitations -- and it's a fine line, we want people to come down and have a good time at the Jersey Shore and be free to do what they want to do and enjoy our beaches and our boardwalks and our businesses, however, when you are sending out flyers that say 'bring your own beer, bring your own weed' and obviously there might be some fights to be had and all that -- we're not going to put up with that here at the Jersey Shore, we have a very family-oriented and business-oriented environment up and down Monmouth and Ocean County."
Some fireworks but certainly not all fireworks are legal in New Jersey, so steer clear of what's not allowed and even what is in certain cases as well.
"I use the simple statement -- if it goes boom, don't use it -- and that holds true with New Jersey law, sparklers are allowed and those candles that sparkle up, they're allowed as well, but anything explosive is not allowed," Golden said.