Most parents who bring their kids to the beach worry about sun burn or bad rip tides, both common occurrences that can often be controlled. However there is a danger on every beach that most people don’t even think about.

The Long Beach Township Beach Patrol reported that they had to stop a child from digging a hole as it was a risk to his life and the safety of those around him. The sand has proven in recent years to be dangerous for children, taking 31 lives in cases reported in America and a 3 other countries.

A small hole to put feet in or to create sand castles with shouldn’t raise a red flag. The danger comes when the holes get deep enough to bury someone or when a tunnel is made in between holes that are big enough for someone to crawl through. These kinds of holes loosen the sand and put those in the hole at risk of the walls collapsing, trapping the child under the sand.

The case on Long Beach involved a deep hole with a tunnel system being dug when they stumbled across the child looking to dig under where his parents were sitting. The chief lifeguard immediately put a halt to the project.

Lifeguards are trained with special extraction tactics in case the event of a collapse does occur, but they urge beachgoers to use their judgment. If a hole looks to be dangerous they ask that you report it to the nearest lifeguard stand.

If the safety reasons outweigh the risk of ruining a little beach digging, will it get to the point where lifeguards are forced to prevent all hole digging?


Sources:, ABC News


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This blog was written by Nicole Alexander, a freelance writer for Townsquare Media South Jersey.