Beach Safety

To ensure all the saftey and enjoyment of all our beach visitors, the Municipality
has placed limitations on the size and placement of tents and umbrellas
on the Main Beach in Grand Bend.  See below for complete details.

Grand Bend Beach Patrol

All Grand Bend Beach Lifeguards are certified through the Lifesaving Society and tested annually on waterfront rescues. Beach Patrol provides public education, patrols the beach by foot and in towers, inspects the beach for hazards, administers first aid, searches for missing people and performs water rescues.

Beach Patrol has concluded for the 2019 season.

Tents and umbrellas

Tents and umbrellas have become a necessity to some beach goers, but visitors need to keep in mind the rules that have been put in place to keep everyone safe. No person shall erect a tent or umbrella on the Main Beach so as to interfere or obscure a lifeguard’s view of the water’s edge or beyond:

a) Tents and umbrellas must be erected behind the umbrella line and be erected no less than ten feet apart;

b) Tents containing more than three opaque sides are not permitted at any time and must be no larger than 40 square feet, and no higher than 5 feet when assembled;

c) Umbrellas with a centre pole no greater than 7 feet 6 inches in height and a circular shade no greater than 9 feet in diameter are permitted;

Exceptions may be made to accomodate persons with accesssibility needs. Special events that require larger tents would require a permit from the Community Services Department. 

Life jacket lending program

Our life jacket lending program is free! Visit the Grand Bend Beach Concession Stand to borrow a life jacket. All you need to do is leave a piece of identification with the concession staff and return the life jacket by 6:00 pm the same day you borrow it. 

Postings and closures

Weekly water samples are taken at public beaches from late May to early September by Lambton Public Health. These samples are tested and monitored for high levels of bacteria, excessive algae growth or other contaminants that could cause negative health effects associated with swimming. Warnings are posted when E. coli levels are higher than provincial guidelines. However, due to the delay in receiving lab results, you cannot rely on only lab results to know if it is safe to swim. Learn how to make an informed decision about beach water quality before swimming.


An advisory is a warning to swimmers but it does not mean the beach is closed. It means the water contains levels of bacteria that suggest there may be a higher risk of developing minor skin, eye, ear, nose and throat infections or stomach disorders. If you choose to swim during an advisory, it may be wise to avoid submerging your head or swallowing the water.


A beach closure is issued when a catastrophic event occurs or an immediate risk to health is present. For example, sewage spills or toxic chemical releases. Beach closures are rare.

Beach signage



Lambton Public Health - Water Quality Caution Sign

NOT POSTED – Swim with Caution

At this time, there are no warning signs posted at the beach, and levels of bacteria are within the acceptable range according to the Ministry of Health Beach Management Protocol.

Lambton Public Health - Water Quality Warning Sign

POSTED – Unsafe to Swim

Warning signs have been posted at the beach due to recent high levels of E.coli bacteria.

Beach warning flags

The Grand Bend Beach uses warning flags along the shoreline. Beach Patrol is on duty if a flag is being used. Different coloured flags communicate current swimming conditions.

Flag Image

Flag Colour

Swim Conditions

Green Flag - good conditions

Green Flag

Good conditions, no unusual hazards.

Yellow Flag - moderate conditions

Yellow Flag

Moderate conditions, swim with caution.

Red Flag - unsafe swimming conditions

Red Flag

Danger! Swimming not advised.

No Flag - no patrol on duty

No Flag

No Beach Patrol Officer on duty.

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