Health, security

Travel well informed

Safety eruption volcano piton de la fournaise on Réunion Island

« Volcan la pété »

The volcano is erupting

When the Piton de la Fournaise erupts, the site is monitored round the clock by police officers. If you want to approach the lava flows, follow safety instructions carefully and read the news report of the Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la Fournaise (volcano observatory) available on http://www.ipgp.fr/pages/03030807.php

To enjoy this spectacle appreciated by tourists and locals, we advise you to wake up early to avoid traffic jams.

 

Health services

Reunion Island has an excellent network of nurses, doctors and fully-equipped hospitals. The following link will give you a list of hospitals and clinics on the island: http://www.hopital.fr/annuaire/974/. Health services are available all over the island according to the French standards but there are no specific health risks in Reunion. Vaccinations are not required before coming, except for passengers flying in from a country currently affected by cholera or yellow fever. It’s still advised to protect yourself well from mosquito bites and from its potential virus. The advanced medical and pharmaceutical network means that it’s easy to get your hands on all kinds of medicine and hygiene products. For long drives up in the mountains, it is prudent to take preventative measures against car sickness.

 

Fauna and Flora

In the lagoon, there is no particular danger but watch out for sea urchins, corals, stonefish and jellyfish.

Facing inoffensive or dangerous sharks is very rare and this may disappoint divers. Nevertheless to avoid such animals, don’t surf neither at dusk nor in cloudy water nor in unauthorised areas.

 

lagoon on reunion island allow to do activities or not

Bathing and shark risk

Swimming, including when done using equipment such as mask, fins, snorkel and water activities using the driving force of the waves (surfing, bodysurfing, longboard, paddleboard) are prohibited until September 15, 2017 in the zone 300 meters from the coast of the department of La Réunion, except in the lagoon and outside the lagoon, through spaces and supervised areas defined by law pursuant to Article L.2213-23 of the General Code of Territorial Units. (Extract from the prefectural No. 222 of 7 February 2018)

 

Before bathing

- Learn about the swell and existing currents.

- Ask the lifeguards at the beach about possible dangers before enjoying bathing or watersports…

- Check the colour of the flag:

Green Flag: Supervised swimming and absence of danger. 

Yellow-orange flag: dangerous but supervised swimming. 

Bright red flag: Ban on swimming and water activities (except diving).

On some beaches, these measures are completed by a shark signage.

Red flag showing a shark: Shark reported and / or observed.

Orange flag showing a shark: Weather conditions are increasing the presence of sharks.

  • - Check that you are in a bathing secure area
  • - Make sure you are in good shape
  • - In the mountains, swimming in ponds requires maximum caution due to potential rise in water levels during the rainy season and the risk of hypothermia. It is to outlaw the days following the cyclone.
     

During bathing

  • Monitor your loved ones and children
  • Protect yourself from the sun, with the following equipment: umbrella, hat, lycra and sunscreen (to use rugular).
  • Avoid exposure to the sun between11 a.m and 16 p.m when the sun's intensity is higher.
  • Drink liquid (water) regularly to avoid dehydration
  • Bathing shoes help prevent bruising associated with coral or sea urchins in the lagoon. However do not step on the corals and do not collect them even dead. You also expose yourself to a fine because they are protected species 

Here’s is a link to access the secure bathing areas: http://en.reunion.fr/discover/sea/coastline-and-beaches

 

Reminder

  • Don’t practise any nautical activity or don’t bathe in the following cases: at dawn and at dusk, if the water is cloudy, or just after heavy rain.

 

  • Surfing activities are now strongly discouraged by the Ligue de Surf de la Réunion (Surf league of Reunion Island). Secure sessions are organised, you can check with the League at the following number: 02 62 33 25 20 
  • In the absence of this signage or when the beach is not monitored by the MNS (lifeguards), we recommend that you do not swim, except in the lagoons.

 

cyclone follow safety instructions

Cyclone

Listen out for news on the radio and follow all safety instructions. For more information about the low-pressure systems present around the island, please visit the Meteo France website: http://www.meteo.fr/temps/domtom/La_Reunion/meteoreunion2/ 
 

There are three alert levels: cyclone vigilance, orange alert and red alert:

 -During vigilance, you must get informed about the evolution of the cyclone.

-During the orange alert sea trips and mountain hikes are forbidden.  It’s time to stock up on batteries, torches, candles, canned food, bottled water…  books and board games!-During the red alert you must stay indoorsOnce the red alert is over, find out about the state of the roads before setting out anywhere (Inforoutes: 02 62 97 27 27).
Do not touch fallen electric cables, do not drink tap water unless you have boiled it for at least 5 minutes, do not go into the mountains and do not cross submerged riffles or fords.