Memorial Day is near, and our 13.5 miles of beautiful beaches will soon be full of beachgoers.  Shore Beach Service is the Beach Patrol for Hilton Head Island.   Our staff will soon swell to over 80 lifeguards.  Some are local, but most from across the country and around the world.

Below are a few safety tips that all beachgoers should follow to make a day on the beach safer and more enjoyable.


During the summer months we have lifeguards stationed throughout Hilton Head Island.  Shore Beach Service is a certified agency of the United States Lifesaving Association, so all of our lifeguards are trained according to USLA standards.  Swimming near a lifeguard allows you to check with the guard for any potential hazards, such as rougher than normal surf, jellyfish, or stingrays.  Additionally, if you do need assistance, the lifeguard can respond more quickly.

Protect yourself from the sun & HEAT

Most beach goers are not accustomed to the conditions created by the heat and humidity on Hilton Head Island.  It is vitally important to remember that when heading out to the beaches.  Our Beach Patrol assists with heat related illnesses frequently during the summer.

Be sure to wear sunscreen, and reapply throughout the day.  Use an umbrella or other equipment to get shade and keep cool.  Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day.   Be sure to eat.   Limit exercise to the morning and evening hours when the sun is less intense and temperatures are cooler.

If you get lost or lose someone, alert the closest lifeguard as soon as possible

This is a big issue for the Beach Patrol, as we spend time looking for approximately 700 people each year.  Don’t be embarrassed to tell a lifeguard or flag down a Beach Patrol Jeep to tell them that you are lost or are looking for someone…it happens a lot.  Our lifeguards carry radios, which allow them to communicate to every other lifeguard on the beach.  We can get information about lost people out to every guard on the beach as soon as we hear about it.

To help you know where you are on the beach, we have a Beach Marker system on Hilton Head Island. The markers say “EMERGENCY CALL 911 YOU ARE AT MARKER NO.” with a number below.  They start with number 1 in South Beach, and are spaced sequentially about every 1/10 of a mile until marker 135, in Port Royal Plantation.  Most of the signs use only a number for reference, while some have an“A” “B” or “C” after them.  These signs are marking an access between the other signs.  For example, 59 and 60 are a 1/10 of a mile apart. The Coligny Beach access sits between those markers and is marker 59A.

We look forward to a safe summer on Hilton Head Island!

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