ATLANTIC BEACH, N.C. (WNCT) — With concerns about rip currents growing among tourists, many are flocking to beaches with lifeguards for added assurance.
The Circle is already a hot spot at Atlantic Beach during the summer season. And as more folks flock to the area because of the lifeguards, businesses are seeing a direct impact.
The two drownings along our coast within the last week aren’t deterring folks from visiting. But they are changing which part of the beach that they visit.
Businesses in and around the Circle say they’re seeing more tourists already this season than in the past. And they expect that trend to continue upward.
“We’re right here on the water so anytime anyone comes out we’re right on the water for everyone to come in and grab and drink and something to eat,” said Andrew Smith, bartender for The Crab’s Claw.
Which is good news for businesses right up next to the sand like Davis’s Beachwear, whose owner says more people are buying boogie boards because of the added safety factor of the leash.
“The leash attaches to your wrist so if you get in trouble you can pull it back and have something to float on,” said Buddy Davis, owner of Davis’s Beachwear.
While parking isn’t free at the Circle like it is at other locations up and down the beach that extra cost helps pay for the lifeguards.