Local NewsUnderstanding Rip Currents: What to Look for and How...

Understanding Rip Currents: What to Look for and How to Stay Safe

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As the holiday weekend approaches, local authorities are reminding beachgoers about the characteristics of rip currents and offering guidance on how to handle them if caught in one.

Rip currents are often observed during coastal storms, according to Deputy Chief Richard Emberg of the Bourne Fire Department. Emberg emphasizes that attempting to overpower the current is futile and dangerous. Instead, he advises swimmers to swim parallel to the shore, moving away from the current’s path. By doing so, they can either escape the current or wait for it to weaken before swimming diagonally towards the shore.

Remaining calm is crucial when caught in a rip current, stresses Emberg. Panic can worsen the situation and hamper decision-making abilities. For those on the shoreline witnessing someone caught in a rip current, Emberg advises against impulsively attempting a rescue. Instead, they should immediately call 911 and alert the nearest lifeguard for assistance.

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