2nd November 2009 Large long period north-northeast swells will continue to affect the northern exposed coastlines of the Virgin Islands through to Wednesday morning. These swells will peak late tonight or early Tuesday and subside on Wednesday. The long period north-northeast swells have the potential to produce large breaking waves of 10 to 15 feet or larger along the northern exposed reefs, beaches and shoals of the islands.

These breaking waves will generate strong and dangerous currents within the surf zone called rip currents. These narrow outward flowing currents can carry people and animals away from the coast line and out to sea. If you become caught in a rip current do not panic. Calmly remain afloat, gather your bearings relative to the beach and swim parallel to the beach. You will eventually leave the grip of this narrow current and be able to safely swim to shore.

Local beach goers and inexperienced surfers and swimmers should stay out of the water until hazardous surf conditions subside. Persons on the beach should be vigilant for large breaking waves surging upon the shore which can carry people of all sizes into the ocean. Avoid being near the shoreline and stay away from rock formations.


Due to the increase in North East Swells Life Guards have issued safety flags for the following beaches;

RED FLAGS – are flying at the Long Bay , Apple Bay , Trunk Bay , Rogues Bay , Josiah’s Bay , Lambert Beach and the Baths

YELLOW FLAGS -are flying at Smuggler’s Cove.

Lifeguards are on duty at Josiah’s Bay from 9AM to 5PM. For more beach safety information visit www.surflifesavingbvi.org

The Department of Disaster Management is encouraging swimmers, beachgoers and persons living along the coast to exercise the necessary precautions to protect life and property from the conditions affecting the northern coasts. Please visit the DDM’s website at www.bviddm.com for further information.   

RED FLAG –             Danger – No Swimming. (The Baths Mooring Field Closed).
YELLOW FLAG –         Caution – Weak Swimmers are discouraged from entering the water.
PURPLE FLAG –        Marine Life Warning i.e. Jellyfish.

Beach Safety Flag warnings, are current for the day of issue and may change accordingly, if the conditions exist to the following day another warning will be issued for that day. Liability for loss of business or otherwise is not accepted by your having taken the above safety advice.

Disclaimer: The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) is not an official Meteorological Office. The information disseminated by the Department is gathered from professional sources used or contracted by the DDM. This Release is a guide for anyone who has interest in local weather conditions. The DDM or the BVI Government cannot be held accountable by anyone who uses this information inappropriately for legal evidence or in justification of any decision which may result in the loss of finances, property or life.