The work of the emergency services has been praised by Independent Councillor William McCandless following a number of callouts over the weekend.
Councillior McCandless said “The travel restrictions imposed upon us by Covid-19 precautions have led to most of us having to be content with staycations, a sensible option to take. Understandably the volume of people converging on the popular North Coast has led to overcrowded beaches.
“Whilst I always enjoy seeing people using our area as a holiday destination it is placing additional pressure on our ‘blue light services’ and I would appeal to people to recognise the dangers that surround our coastline.
“At the weekend BBC N.I. News reported in a statement from RNLI that there have been more North Coast rescues in the past week than in the whole of 2019.
“With the anticipated footfall at our beaches and beauty spots I would appeal to all to exercise caution in social distancing and be aware of the dangers of rip tides, currents, inflatables being carried out to sea and climbing on cliffs and rocks.
“All of these are extremely dangerous but the incidents in which Lifeguards, RNLI, Coastguard, PSNI have been involved in over the past week :- young people climbing around cliff face at Downhill, assault in Portrush, false alarm at Portstewart, rescue at Runkerry Head, divers at Rathlin Island have been a reminder of dangers that are ever-present and the need to exercise caution.
“I would wish to pay tribute to ALL the blue light and emergency services who are always there so we can enjoy the tourist beauty spots. Let us play our part in helping them, by exercising caution and enjoying our time at the beauty spots with safety first.”