HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Jellyfish season is upon us.
The Hilton Head Island Shore Beach Service has placed yellow caution flags out at several of their locations due to jellyfish stings. They say if you get stung, lifeguards will have you flush the affected area with ocean water.
General Manager Alan Reece of Shore Beach Services on Hilton Head says that early to mid-July is usually the season for jellyfish.
He says it is not uncommon to find sea nettle jellyfish, which are the ones that give beach goers and swimmers the most irritation
Reece says the reason jellyfish are visible is because they break up in in the surf line, making them very difficult to see. Reece says they are not able to tell when the jellyfish go until people actually start getting in the water and getting stung. He says if you are stung by one, it’s similar to getting stung by a bee.
He says they don’t pose a real danger, unless someone has high allergies to bee stings. Reece says it’s important for people to have fair warning and to exercise caution.
“We have a two flag system here on Hilton Head, we’ve got a yellow caution flag and a red caution flag," said Reece. "The yellow flag would indicate medium hazards and the red flag would indicate high hazards so in the case of the jellyfish for example where we’re still going to allow bathers to go into the water, we’ll fly the yellow flags as a medium hazard and should we have a scenerio where we would rather bathers not go into the water, then we’ll fly the high advisory the red flag.”
Reece says if you do get stung and signs and symptoms are abnormal, to seek medical attention right away.
As for the jellyfish people see washed up on the sand, those don’t pose a threat at all.