RNLI lifeguards across beaches in the south west have been dealing with thick coastal fog and poor visibility out to sea this week alongside heightened humidity levels.

With the Met Office predicting more unsettled weather over the next few days, the RNLI is raising awareness of the potential dangers around the coast during these conditions.

Amid the August heatwave, coastal areas across the south west have been experiencing reduced visibility, muggy conditions and thunderstorms.

This often results in coastal fog, which usually occurs in the spring and summer months when conditions begin to warm up but the sea - which warms more slowly - stays relatively cold.

Falmouth Packet:

Lifeguards using sand signage to alert beach goers. Photo: RNLI

RNLI lifeguards have sometimes needed to put up red flags on the beach if conditions are too dangerous, such as the risk of lightning and poor visibility out to sea.

Due to the sporadic weather conditions, the lifeguards may need to fly the red flag at different points throughout the day, removing it if conditions improve, and the red and yellow flagged area may appear a lot smaller than usual.

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Steve Instance, RNLI water safety lead in the south west, said: "If our lifeguards can’t see you, we can’t save you if you get into difficulty in the water.

"We are urging beachgoers to only enter the water between the red and yellow flags and always ask the lifeguards for advice – a red flag simply means it is too dangerous to enter the water."