Public safety is the primary responsibility of the Clearwater Beach Patrol. Guards provide safety supervision for designated areas of gulf waters and adjacent beach on Clearwater Beach. Please swim near a lifeguard.
Lifeguards are on duty daily at Clearwater Beach. Swim near guarded towers. See towers for guarded hours.
Do the Stingray Shuffle
Stingrays are not normally an aggressive fish, but they will defend themselves if they feel that they are threatened, such as being stepped on. Stingrays use the stinger in their tails to sting a predator (this includes unintentional beachgoer) usually in the ankle or foot. The stinger is covered in a protein similar to a bee sting, which adds to the pain of the sting.
To avoid stings, shuffle or slide your feet slowly through the sand to warn the stingrays to your presence and they will move out of your way. Do the "stingray shuffle" from the time you get in the water until the time you get out.
For most stings, the basic first-aid treatment is to soak the area in hot water to help breakdown the toxins. This will also help relieve the pain. However, some people may develop a severe allergic reaction since the protein on the stinger is very similar to that of a bee sting. In this case, you should seek immediate medical assistance. If you get stung, see a lifeguard or go to a nearby fire station for an assessment of your injury.