In Media: Sea Grant's #BEachSAFEly, Boater Safety Campaigns During COVID-19 Pandemic
COVID-19: NYSG's Rapid Response Support for its Coastal Stakeholders - News

This summer, the beaches are open and you should enjoy them! Just remember that you still need to practice social distancing – embrace your personal space. Credit: Joel Davenport | New York & New Jersey Sea Grant Programs

 Published on's Three Village site 

Stony Brook, NY, July 27, 2020 - New York Sea Grant (NYSG) is rolling out some COVID-19 rapid response projects this summer to assist New York's coastal users.


COVID-19 brings considerations beyond the usual beach safety messaging. In response, Sea Grant programs in New York and New Jersey have launched a new summer-long social media graphic with specific safety messages for beachgoers each week.

"The driving force behind 'Beach Safely' is that we want people to 'be safe,' said NYSG's Coastal Processes & Hazards Specialist Kathleen Fallon, who is based at Stony Brook University (SBU) and leads the project. "This summer it's important that people know they can still go outside and enjoy the beach but need to understand how to do so safely."

This is reinforced in the campaign's first message, "Stay Social, Be Distant." Another message highlights how to break the grip of a rip current, which can pose a serious threat for beachgoers. These narrow channels of fast-moving water that pull swimmers away from the shore account for more than 80 percent of lifeguard beach rescues.

Making sure you have your sunscreen and sanitizer as well as keeping an eye on your mask so it doesn't become marine debris are two other key reminders that will play out during the nine-week long campaign. New #BEachSAFEly posts are released on Thursdays at, and

For Hire Industry

Sea Grant is providing New York's marine and freshwater for-hire boating sector with a series of decals and posters to encourage public compliance with boating-specific COVID-19 safety precautions. Credit: Loriann Cody; Dave White | New York Sea Grant

NYSG is providing New York State's saltwater and freshwater for-hire boating sector with a series of decals to encourage compliance with boating-specific COVID-19 safety precautions. More at

"Angling is an excellent outdoor recreation past time, as long it is conducted in ways to minimize the spread of COVID-19," said NYSG's Marine Fisheries Specialist Antoinette Clemetson, based at SBU and one of the leads for this project. "NYSG is pleased to make these signs available to remind both crew and angler passengers about simple actions they can use to help fight this virus. Captains who operate these for hire vessels can visit our website to request a COVID-19 sign kit, while supplies last."

Clemetson's co-lead, NYSG's Coastal Recreation and Tourism Specialist Dave White, is based at SUNY Oswego. White brings to the partnership a series of decals to encourage public compliance with boating-specific COVID-19 safety precautions as part of the 2020 edition of NYSG's nationally-recognized "Discover Clean and Safe Boating" campaign.

The decals will adhere to boat surfaces to note "Mask Required," "Use Sanitizer," "Wear It" with a life jacket symbol, and "Keep Personal Belongings Personal"; others have a blank line to write a name with an erasable marker to designate person-specific areas aboard the vessel for each individual's fishing pole or diving gear. There is no cost for the decals to qualified for-hire boating businesses.

"This new outreach for 2020 is aimed at maintaining the opportunity to be on New York's fabulous boating waters once again for both the public and the marine industry that is an essential economic driver for our coastal communities," said White. "This project draws inspiration from a marine industry theme from the 1990s that fits today: 'Boating in NY is good clean fun. . . let's keep it that way.'"

Seafood Industry

NYSG Seafood Specialist Mike Ciaramella, who is based at SBU, is working with seafood producers to ensure that they have the ability and understanding of how to alter marketing strategies quickly and effectively.

The goal is to provide clarity, as Ciaramella explains: "While a variety of resources exist outlining best practices and alternative strategies for marketing seafood products, the specifics of marketing within every state varies significantly due to differences in infrastructure and regulations."

The guidance documents to be produced will hopefully allow NY Seafood producers to be more resilient to changing market demands, like those faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

NYSG also provides additional information that businesses, educators, landowners and other stakeholders can use during the pandemic at

More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York (SUNY), is one of 34 university-based programs under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

Through NYSG’s efforts, the combined talents of university scientists and extension specialists help develop and transfer science-based information to many coastal user groups—businesses and industries, federal, state and local government decision-makers and agency managers, educators, the media and the interested public.

The program maintains Great Lakes offices at Cornell University, University at Buffalo, SUNY Oswego and the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University in Long Island, Brooklyn College and Cornell Cooperative Extension in NYC and Kingston in the Hudson Valley.

For updates on Sea Grant activities: has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly. Our program also produces an occasional e-newsletter,"NOAA Sea Grant's Social Media Review," via its blog,

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