31 July 2015
Swimmers and beach-goers have reported larger than usual numbers of jellyfish in Jersey’s coastal waters, particularly along the north coast.
Several swimmers were stung by jellyfish at Bouley Bay yesterday (30 July) prompting calls to the Department of the Environment and Environmental Health. Northern France and south-west England have reported a similar increase in jellyfish numbers .
Keep an eye out
The Head of Environmental Health, Stewart Petrie said "There are more jellyfish than might normally be expected, and their stings can be painful, particularly for anyone who receives multiple stings. We are not saying that people should avoid going into the water, but it is important that they are aware.
"Parents may wish to keep an eye out for children who are not confident swimmers and may be alarmed if they are stung while swimming, and young children who see a jellyfish on the shoreline should be told not to touch any part of it – both the body and the tentacles are capable of delivering stings, and dead jellyfish can still sting. Dog walkers should also be aware."
Emergency Department consultant Dr Nick Payne, said "If people have been stung, they need to get out of the water to avoid getting stung again. Once out, slowly pouring seawater over the sting will help ease the pain, followed by the application of ice wrapped in a cloth. Local anaesthetic gels and other forms of pain relief can be obtained from a pharmacy if the pain persists.
"Many people believe that urine or vinegar should be used, however this is not the case – these may discharge the nematocysts – the cause of the sting – and potentially cause further stings."
Link to NHS website information about jellyfish stings