Flag system key to communicating rip current conditions

ATLANTIC BEACH, N.C. (WNCT) – If you’re heading to the beach at all this summer, it’s important to pay attention to your surroundings.

Every morning, lifeguards communicate what the rip current conditions are through a flag system.

  • If it’s green, you’re good to go in the water.
  • If it’s yellow, you should use caution
  • If it’s red, you shouldn’t go in the water at all

According to the Atlantic Beach EMS captain, swimmers really need to pay attention to this system.

“If you’ve got high rollers and large breakers coming in, they look like they’re a lot of fun to swim in but they can be very dangerous,” he said. “And added on to that, if you get stuck in the breaker, in the rollers, and the rip current, you get in a very bad situation. You can’t swim against it and the best advice I can give is to let it take you.”

Experts say never try to challenge the rip currents, no matter how experienced you are as a swimmer.

To keep you and your family safe, the Emerald Isle Police Department is hosting an education session. It’ll focus on beach safety, avoiding rip currents, and is presented by Emerald Isle lifeguards.

It’s happening Tuesday at 10 a.m. in the town board meeting room.

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