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Increased sightings of Portuguese man o'wars in Jacksonville Beach

On Tuesday, flags at the beaches were yellow and purple. Yellow meaning moderate ocean conditions with potential rip currents and purple meaning dangerous sea life.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — If you plan to go to the beach, be aware of your surroundings in the water.

In Jacksonville Beach, there have been increased sightings of Portuguese Man O'Wars inshore, according to the Jacksonville Beach Ocean Rescue Division.

On Tuesday, flags at the beaches were yellow and purple. Yellow meaning moderate ocean conditions with potential rip currents and purple meaning dangerous sea life.

Lt. Max Ervanian, Prevention and Training Officer with the Ocean Rescue Division, says if you are stung by a Man O'War you should remove any tentacles that may still be on the skin using gloves.

He says you should rinse the area with salt water and apply heat packs or soak the affected area in hot water. 

"Do not use vinegar on stings as vinegar will cause more of an irritation," he explains.

If you are at the beach with a lifeguard nearby, seek the lifeguard’s attention. 

If anyone starts experiencing shortness of breath, headache, nausea, dizziness, trouble seeing, or difficulty breathing, they should seek a Lifeguard immediately or call 911 if a lifeguard is not close by. 

Get medical care for moderate to severe reactions.

RELATED: Man o' war sightings reported in St. Augustine, Neptune Beach

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