Galveston Beach Conditions

For any questions on the current conditions, ask a lifeguard or park representative.

Beach Safety Tips

Flag Warning System

The Flag Warning System is used to advise beach patrons of the current water conditions and any applicable environmental warnings. The flag colors described below are part of a national system employed to help beach-goers understand the current conditions in the always dynamic environment of open water.

Green Flag

Indicates that conditions are calm. Swim with care.

Yellow Flag

Indicates caution should be used when entering any body of water. This flag is flown for normal conditions to remind swimmers to stay alert.

Red Flag

Flown when conditions are determined to be out of the ordinary, such as presence of strong wind, strong current or large surf. Adult swimmers should stay in water no more than waist deep and non-swimmers and children should be kept along the surf line.

Purple Flag

Indicates a potential problem with jellyfish, Portuguese man-o-war, stingrays or other marine life that could be a hazard for swimmers. Purple flags will be used in combination with other flags.

Orange Flag

Indicates there is an environmental warning for air and/or water quality. Ask the Lifeguard for more details. Orange pennant flags will be used in combination with other flags.

Real-Time Beach Watch Advisories

The Galveston County Health District, in conjunction with the Texas General Land Office (GLO), monitors recreational coastal waters for elevated levels of the bacterial indicator enterococcus. A beach water advisory is issued for the beach adjacent to the testing site when water quality standards for the bacteria are exceeded. The Galveston County Beach Watch program samples 52 monitoring stations along Galveston Island, the Bolivar Peninsula and one site on the Texas City Dike.