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How to Spot Rip Currents and Escape From Them

Our best summer memories can be connected with beaches and water. However, you can easily come across rip currents that account for most incidents on the beach.

5-Minute Crafts is ready to explain how to identify rip currents and break free from them.

❗ Important: This article is for informational purposes only and doesn’t replace professional advice. Be extremely careful while performing any activities near water.

How to identify rip currents

Rip currents are narrow channelized currents of water that flow away from shore at beaches. They are dangerous, as they can pull you away from the shore and raise their speed in just a short time.

The good news is that you can spot them from the shore by looking for specific signs:

  • Calm parts of water between breaking waves and white water
  • Fewer breaking waves
  • Water color difference: water can be sandy or murky brown
  • Debris, foam, or seaweed floating out to sea
  • A rippled look, when the water around is generally calm

If you notice these signs or you are not sure, don’t enter the water. Also, always choose a beach supervised by lifeguards.

How to escape them

If you happen to get into a rip current, follow the next tips:

  • Don’t panic and relax. Try to save your energy.
  • Raise your arm so that you attract the attention of lifeguards.
  • If a rip current takes you away from the beach, swim parallel to the beach, in the direction of white water and breaking waves, don’t swim against a rip current.
  • Then, swim at an angle toward the beach.
  • If you feel that you won’t be able to get to the shore yourself, wave, yell, and try to draw the lifeguard’s attention to you. They will help you.
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