The chilly air and wind in February and March makes us know winter is still here, but there are signs of spring in the longer days of sunshine. You might be making summer plans for activities near water such as boating or beaching, or preparing for a triathlon swim. However, keep in mind that open water is a powerful force that we should respect. We can’t always avoid every danger inherent in open water, but there are some we can learn to handle better such as rip currents that account for 80 percent of beach rescues.
They are powerful, channeled currents of water flowing away from shore that quickly pull swimmers out to sea. Rip currents typically extend from the shoreline, through the surf zone, and past the line of breaking waves. The best way to stay safe is to recognize the danger of rip currents. If caught in one, don't fight it! Swim parallel to the shore and swim back to land at an angle. Always remember to swim at beaches with lifeguards. (National Ocean Service)
Be sure you and your family are prepared with strong swimming skills and an understanding of how to react in unexpected situations. Building skills now will help you experience a safer and more relaxing vacation around water this summer.