Forecasters warn beach goers of rip currents

Posted by Debra Worley - email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Rip currents claim more than 100 lives in the United States and cause more than 80 percent of beach rescues each year.

In an effort to remind residents of the risks of rip currents, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, along with the National Park Service, has designated this week as Rip Current Awareness Week.

Last week an Ohio woman reportedly died after almost being swept away by a rip current in Kure Beach.

Over Memorial Day weekend, lifeguards rescued more than 100 people from rip currents at Carolina Beach.

Rip currents are narrow channels of water that pull swimmers away from the beach. If caught in a rip current, swim along the shoreline. Then when you're free of the current, swim at an angle away from the current toward shore.

If you try to swim directly against a rip current, you may tire and drown.

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