Dangers of Swimming in Florida

Florida - Swimming - Dangers
Florida - Swimming - Dangers

Millions of people swim in the waters off the coasts of Florida but what are the dangers? There are all sorts of things to consider before swimming in the Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic Ocean. Let’s discuss the Dangers of Swimming in Florida. 


The nickname “The Sunshine State” doesn’t mean the sun shines here perpetually. Often storms strike with little warning, largely in the summer months. Unfortunately, this is when the beaches are the busiest.  

Lightning strikes kill an average of five people in Florida each year with the months of summer generally being the deadliest, per National Weather Service statistics. Enjoy your vacation in Florida, but in the event of a storm, seek shelter in an enclosed building – not a pavilion or under an umbrella.  

Florida - Swimming - Dangers

The Sun 

Again, with a name like the Sunshine State, how can you not expect a lot of sunny days? It’s probably why to chose Florida to take your vacation.  

However, if you didn’t also come prepared for the very real dangers hidden in the sun, it can very easily make you sick and ruin your vacay. Too much sun can cause irreversible damage to the skin and perhaps lead to cancer later in life. 

It’d best to go with sunscreen in favor of tanning oil and reapply it often. Also, be sure to bring a beach umbrella with you or rent one once you get to the beach.  

Rip Currents 

Another danger visitors often underestimate is rip currents. Windy summer days often bring with them the danger of rip currents. These phenomena can rapidly pull swimmers far from the shore.  

Related:  3 Best Cuban Sandwich Spots in Florida

If you happen to get caught in a rip current, stay calm. Swim parallel to the shore until you notice the current give way. Return to shore at an angle to avoid swimming against the current. 

Sharks and Jellyfish 

Other dangers that catch many visitors off guard when vacationing here are sharks, stingrays, and jellyfish. Swimming here can be a blast until you encounter one of these three sea critters. And what we’ve listed here are just a few of the dangers you could encounter. 

Come to Florida and enjoy the beach, emerald waters, and warm sun. And don’t worry, if you learn about and pay attention to beach warning flags that the lifeguards issue, you’ll always be safe. Check out 5 Beach Safety Tips to learn about them and what they mean.  

You’ll also want to read about the dangers of Florida’s massive sargassum bloom (here) as well as the dangers of the red tide (here). Be sure and stay up to speed on all the hot spots and sweet destinations in Florida. 

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