High risk of rip currents holiday weekend

This file photo shows a lifeguard practicing in the surf in Ship Bottom, N.J. on Long Beach Island.(AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
This file photo shows a lifeguard practicing in the surf in Ship Bottom, N.J. on Long Beach Island.(AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

- The later than normal holiday weekend brings a lifeguard shortage to ocean beaches. Many lifeguards are students and teachers who have already gone back to school. Swimmers are urged to use caution with rough water conditions in the forecast. The National Weather Service has posted a high risk of rip currents to kick off the holiday weekend.

Gusty northeast winds and increasing surf of 3 to 4 feet will pose a threat to non-experienced swimmers. It is important to swim only at beaches with lifeguards on duty.

You should also never swim alone.

If you get stuck in a rip current, remain calm and do not fight the current. Swim parallel to the shore to the left or right to get out of the current.

Once you are free, swim back to shore. If you are unable to swim out of the rip current, float or calmly tread water.

Draw attention to yourself by waving your arm and yelling for help.

Find more information on water safety at the following link: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/okx/srf/srfDisplay.php

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