By using common-sense, residents and visitors can enjoy the diverse and unique landscapes that Australia offers.
While beautiful, Australia’s beaches can be potentially dangerous. There are often strong currents called “rips.” The safest places to swim on the beaches are between the red and yellow flags. These flags indicate that the area is patrolled by lifeguards.
Be sure to never swim alone, at night, or while under the influence of alcohol.
Shark netting deters sharks, but you can further reduce your rink of attack by only swimming in designated areas. Also, avoid swimming at dusk.
Crocodiles live in rivers and coastal estuaries in Northern Australia. The often travel by sea to new habitats. Some areas to avoid are: rivers, estuaries, tidal rivers, deep pools and mangrove shores.
Especially during the months between October and May, swimmers need to be especially cautious of box jellyfish. Box jellyfish stings can cause paralysis of the muscles around the lungs and heart, which leads to death if untreated.
Stingrays are usually docile animals, but they do have a venomous spine that they utilize when they feel threatened or accidentally stepped on.
Stonefish are very well camouflaged in their surroundings. They possess venomous spines on their backs that have been known to pierce the sole of shoes. Their stings are excruciatingly painful and can cause infections.
Other Dangerous Animals
You can avoid snake and spider bites while hiking by wearing protective footwear. If you are bitten by a snake or spider, seek immediate medical attention. Deaths are rare and anti-venoms are available.
Bull ants are nearly 2.5cm long, and have pincer-like jaws and stingers to inject venom. These insects are very aggressive and come in contact with people often. Luckily, their bites are not fatal to most people unless the person has an allergy to the venom. The bites are, however, very painful.
Platypuses are interesting-looking and seemingly harmless. They are, however, one of the few venomous mammals. There are no recorded human deaths from a platypus sting, but they are definitely an animal you still want to avoid. Their sting is very painful, and there is no anti-venom.
Australians are at risk of injury, death, and loss of property from bushfires. These are most prevalent from late spring through the summer.
It is important to minimize the risk of a bushfire starting by only using designated fireplaces when camping. Be careful when traveling, and make sure you are informed of any fires burning where you may be going. Always comply with road warning signs and observe fire bans.