About Town: September 20, 2020

Hawaii Beach Safety Week is Sept. 20-26

The Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) is recognizing drowning prevention efforts across our islands as the state observes Hawaii Beach Safety Week, Sept. 20-26. This week is dedicated to Hawaii Drowning and Aquatic Injury Prevention Advisory Committee member and long-time water safety advocate Ray Sanborn, who died unexpectedly last week. Sanborn was a founding member of the advisory committee and enthusiastic contributor to drowning prevention efforts for decades, and was president and CEO of Kama’aina Kids.

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While the annual on-scene beach safety events such as State Ocean Safety Conference and Jr. Lifeguard Championships have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a statewide campaign, “Ocean Safety Amidst a Pandemic: Keeping your Ohana Safe,” will showcase radio spots and other safety messaging from water safety officials in each county. The counties and the Drowning and Aquatic Injury Prevention Advisory Committee express gratitude to Archie Kalepa and OluKai for sponsoring these efforts during Hawaii Beach Safety Week.

With COVID-related travel restrictions, the number of visitors at local beaches is drastically reduced, but all counties have seen an increase in residents going fishing and participating in other shoreline and beach activities. Counties are highlighting various efforts to keep people safe in and around the ocean.

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For more information, please contact advisory co-chair Gerald Kosaki at gkosaki@hawaii.rr.com or Hawaii Department of Health’s Bridget Velasco at bridget.velasco@doh.hawaii.gov.

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