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Jellyfish warning to swimmers off Folkestone seafront

By Chris Price

A coastal rescue charity has suggested swimmers wear full-length wetsuits and other protective gear when venturing into the water after reporting an increase in jellyfish.

Folkestone Rescue, which works alongside Dover Coastguard, the RNLI and NCI Folkestone, said it had received reports of "numerous" people being stung over the last two weeks.

The volunteer organisation, which covers the coast between Sandgate and Dover, warned in a post on its website that jellyfish can "give a nasty sting" and should never be handled.

Folkestone Rescue says the number of jellyfish in the waters near the town has increased
Folkestone Rescue says the number of jellyfish in the waters near the town has increased

Logistics manager Chris Lightwing said: "There has been a recent increase in the number of jellyfish around Folkestone’s coast.

"We have had reports of numerous members of the public being stung over the last two weeks.

"When entering the water, please consider wearing protective clothing and footwear such as a full-length wetsuit and boots."

The Coastguard said it had not been made aware of any increase in cases.

"Seen a few dinner plate sized ones when I have been out on the water..." - Bryn Macanley-Dale

However, Bryn Macanley-Dale tweeted: "There have been some large ones about.

"Seen a few dinner plate sized ones when I have been out on the water."

The Folkestone Rescue post also gave safety advice for swimmers.

Mr Lightwing said: "If you have been stung by a jellyfish, you should leave the water immediately and keep still.

"Any remaining tentacles should be removed with tweezers whilst wearing gloves.

"Taking painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen will help to lessen any pain or swelling.

"Do not apply any substances such as vinegar or urine to the affected area; these do not work and may make the injury worse.

"If you have difficulty breathing after being stung, you should seek medical attention immediately by calling 999."

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