It’s summer and that means vacations at the beach! While your beach trip should be all about fun, it is also important to remember the potential dangers that occur while you are there. Read further for an overview of some common beach hazards and how to protect yourself while still having fun.
Rip currents are a significant hazard at the beach and are the single most cause of lifeguard rescues and drowning deaths on the beach. While rip currents can be present in the ocean at any time, they often occur during severe weather as well. As a precaution, using severe weather trackers can help you monitor the weather at the beach and determine if rip currents are more likely to occur while you are there. An important tip to remember if caught in a rip current is to swim parallel to the shore and try to keep calm.
Lightning is another common hazard at the beach. And contrary to popular belief, lightning does not only occur during severe weather, it can also occur due to extreme heat, which is called heat lightning. Severe weather tracking tools can help you determine if the approaching storm will be only rain or a severe thunderstorm. If the weather will turn to a severe thunderstorm, then lightning is likely to occur and it is best to stay off the beach and out of the water. Most beaches have lightning detection systems, but not all of them do. Do your research to find out if the beach you are going to has one, and if not, keep track of the weather yourself.
Strong winds make for hazardous swimming conditions in the water. While swimming among the waves can be fun, it can turn dangerous very quickly if there are severe weather and winds in the area. Winds can pick up quickly at the beach, so being aware is essential.