Other States

Monsoon on course, Goa issues safety advisory

With moderate to heavy rains expected to lash various parts of Goa over the next few days, Drishti Marine, the State-appointed lifeguard agency has issued a monsoon advisory instructing visitors not to venture into the sea.

The Goa government shuts down beaches for swimming and water sports activities from June to August every year as the sea tends to be extremely rough and choppy.

The State also bans fishing for 61days from June 1 to July 31, with nearly 1,500 trawlers pulling their nets off the territorial waters for the entire period of the ban.

According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), heavy rainfall with high-speed winds is likely to occur at isolated places over north and south Goa. Pre-monsoon showers commenced earlier this week with light showers across the State.

Drishti’s nearly 600-strong lifeguard force mans Goa’s beaches through the year. Owing to the present weather conditions, red flags have been posted across all beaches indicating the strictly non-swim zones.

Ravi Shankar, CEO, Drishti Marine, said on Monday, “Even wading into the waters is not advisable during monsoons. Our team of lifeguards, trained to carry out rescues even in rough weather, is present along the coast to monitor the weather conditions.”

Drishti advises visitors to avoid rocky areas, cliffs, and hills on the shoreline. These are very slippery during monsoon season. The height of the waves, intensity and frequencies is inconsistent, can be very high and one can easily get washed away. All rocky areas around the fort areas in Anjuna, Vagator in North coastal belt and Tiracol in South coastal belt are out of bounds during monsoons.

River bathing including water sports activities is restricted and can only be done under the supervision of trained and certified operators.

In case of a dry spell over the next few months and depending on weather conditions, Drishti may open up a few beach stretches so that visitors can wade into the waters.

“Goa’s coastline is quite complex and requires mapping every morning. If weather conditions are favourable, we may open up some of the beaches for visitors who want to wade into the water. These zones can be identified by the red and yellow flags and will be decided on a daily basis. However, even in such conditions, swimming is not advisable due to the presence of underwater currents and rip tides,” cautions Mr. Ravi Shankar.

Drishti has also cautioned adults to keep an eye on children while on the beach and to not allow them to venture into the waters unattended.

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Printable version | Mar 4, 2021 9:33:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/monsoon-on-course-goa-issues-safety-advisory/article27767664.ece

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