FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, July 21, 2020
NYC PARKS PSA WARNS: “A DROWNING CAN HAPPEN IN SECONDS”
Part of its new, comprehensive “Water Safety Campaign,” NYC Parks has unveiled a PSA that speaks directly to the heart of why it is imperative that swimmers strictly do so in designated areas only when lifeguards are on duty.
“This year’s water safety campaign is a departure from our typical, fun and balanced voice and message. We didn’t want the seriousness of the message to be lost, it needed to be direct and to the point,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “Our PSA sets the appropriate tone while telling all that swimming in closed sections of our beaches and shoreline, and when our skilled lifeguards are not on duty, is a risk no one should take.”
The :30 second video, can be seen on TaxiTV and across Parks social channels, featuring a single red, beach warning flag--familiar to beachgoers as signifying “no swimming”--positioned in the sand, flapping in the forceful wind, waves crash on the shore, as subtitles solemnly deliver its message:
A drowning can happen in seconds.
Help can’t always reach you in time.
An off-hour swim isn’t worth the risk.
Swim only when lifeguards are on duty,
Between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. daily.
The new PSA is part of a larger campaign that includes print, out of home ads placed across the city. Designed by NYC Parks, the campaign targets teens and parents and can be seen on bus shelters, link NYC, Hornblower and Staten Island ferries, and adorning prop-lifeguard chairs at all eight Parks beaches across the city.
Lifeguards are on duty at designated beaches daily from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; swimming is unsafe and strictly prohibited at other locations and times. City beaches span a total of 14 miles and include Orchard Beach in the Bronx; Coney Island and Manhattan Beach in Brooklyn; Rockaway Beach in Queens; and Midland Beach, South Beach, Cedar Grove Beach, and Wolfe's Pond Park Beach on Staten Island.
To support social distancing, NYC Parks Ambassadors continues to staff beaches, handing out masks and educating patrons on maintaining safe space. Parks strongly urges all New Yorkers to exercise common sense, wear a face covering, and maintain social distance.