Rip currents: The danger hidden beneath the waves

Weather Week

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Did you know that some rip currents can exceed the speed of an Olympic swimmer?

That’s why, even if you think you can out-swim a rip current, in many cases – you cannot!

The best way to get out of a rip current is to not swim near them in the first place. During the summer, the National Weather Service, along with WPRI 12, issues a rip current risk forecast each day.

Coastal and Marine: Ocean, Bay and Beach Forecast »

There are three types of risks for rip currents, which are color-coded: green is a low risk of rip currents, yellow is a moderate risk, and red is a high risk.

When the forecast is yellow, beachgoers should check with lifeguards and local beach patrols before getting in the water.

Summer Weather: Beach and Rip Current Safety »

When the forecast is red, life-threatening conditions may exist and swimming is not recommended.

If you become caught in a rip current, don’t fight it by swimming toward shore. Instead, swim parallel to the shore to escape.

When you no longer feel the pull of the current, swim at an angle away from the current but back toward shore.

Weather Week: Exploring Summer Threats » | More Storm Ready Resources »

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