Officials stress water safety as people prepare for summer fun


KATY, Texas (KTRK) — As COVID-19 restrictions ease up this summer, more people are expected to hit the water, but experts want people to think about safety.

The Welcome Back Beast Bash took place Saturday at Typhoon Texas, much to the excitement of its guests. To pull it off, the water park did more than plan activities and run the slides. Employees also spent hours making sure it’s done safely.

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There were 200 lifeguards patrolling the park, but in efforts to prevent accidents, the staff also said they didn’t do it alone.

“It’s also a collaborative effort,” said Clayton Talley, the guest experience director at Typhoon Texas. “It’s both, us as a park making sure it’s fun and exciting, but we also need help from our guests to make sure they’re being safe.”

Whether you’re at a water park or a pool this summer, the American Red Cross knows the limitations. They advise people not to swim alone and to teach kids how to ask for help.

SEE RELATED STORY: 3 tips to keep your children safe around the pool this summer

“Just make sure you’re keeping an eye on your children,” Talley said.

Safety also extends to the beach. This Memorial Day weekend, 300,000 people are expected to visit Galveston Island.

If you’re at the Gulf, make sure you know how to handle rip currents. The Galveston Island Beach Patrol is short of about 40 lifeguards right now, however there are enough lifeguards per tower.

“Our number one safety tip is always swim near a lifeguard,” said Peter Davis with Galveston Island Beach Patrol. “I would stress when you’re coming down to the beach, when you’re coming down with a group of family, or even alone driving down the seawall, or going to Stewart Beach, or East Beach Park, or wherever you’re going to go, be sure to look for those lifeguard towers and stop there.”

This summer, COVID restrictions may change when you visit your favorite spot to cool down, but safety hasn’t changed.

“With the complexities of 2020, I think people are excited,” Talley said. “They’re ready. They’re anxious.”

Experts ask not to let the excitement take away from water safety.

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