HOUSTON – The forecast including one to three inches of rain isn’t going to change much this weekend, but I do have a great concern for people who could go swimming in the waters churned up by this weather.
My biggest concern is Sunday weather will clear and the rip current risk will be dangerously high.
Rip currents are powerful, channeled currents of water flowing away from shore. They typically extend from the shoreline, through the surf zone, and past the line of breaking waves. Rip currents can occur at any beach with breaking waves, according to the Galveston Island Beach Patrol. Here are some tips on avoiding rip currents.
Never swim alone.
Never swim near a jetty or a pier, as they can increase the risk for getting caught in a rip current
Be cautious at all times, especially when swimming at unguarded beaches. If in doubt, don’t go out!
Whenever possible, swim at a lifeguard protected beach.
Obey all instructions and orders from lifeguards.
If caught in a rip current, remain calm to conserve energy and think clearly.
Don’t fight the current. Swim out of the current in a direction following the shoreline. When out of the current, swim towards shore.
If you are unable to swim out of the rip current, float or calmly tread water. When out of the current, swim towards shore.
If you are still unable to reach shore, draw attention to yourself: face the shore, wave your arms, and yell for help.
If you see someone in trouble, get help from a lifeguard. If a lifeguard is not available, have someone call 9-1-1 . Throw the rip current victim something that floats and yell instructions on how to escape. Remember, many people drown while trying to save someone else from a rip current.