Safe on Shore

Nova Scotia’s coastal areas are there for you to enjoy. Make your experience safe and memorable by watching for shoreline hazards.

Potential shoreline hazards

Aerial view of Peggys Cove


Easy access to shorelines and coastal areas means you can expose yourself to risks you can’t control.

Exposed shoreline with slippery wet rocks

Slippery rocks

The area between the exposed shoreline and underwater rocks can be extremely slippery. Slippery rocks make it easy to fall in and hard to get out.

Rocky shallows along the shoreline at Peggys Cove

Rocky shallows

Waves and rocky shallows make it hard for rescue vessels and rescuers to reach you in the water.

Vegetation growing on rocks by the ocean


Algae and seaweed grow on rocks in and near the water, making the rocks very slippery.

Wave hitting the rocks at Peggys Cove

Unpredictable waves

Large waves can surge unexpectedly, even when the weather is clear.

Danger sign at Peggys Cove

Cold water

The ocean water in Nova Scotia can be cold enough to cause shock if you fall in suddenly. Shock can affect your breathing and ability to swim.

Currents off the coast in the the Bay of Fundy


Moving ocean water creates strong currents near the shore. These include dangerous riptides.

Close up of a wave in the Atlantic ocean

Storm surges

During storms or hurricanes, waves on the coast can reach up to 5 metres high, or 15 feet.

Lifeguards at Martinique Beach


If you try to rescue a person from the water, you face the same dangers as the victim—cold water, strong waves, and ocean currents.

If a life is in danger, call 911 for immediate help.