www.whyville.net Jun 20, 2004 Weekly Issue

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Torn Away by the Waves

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Hey ya'll, it's troublenc, and since summer has began and most of us are hitting the beach, I thought I'd write something to help you if you get stuck in a rip current!

I've gotten sucked out by one many times, and let me tell you, it's NOT fun. One time I was playing around with my stepsister in deep water up to my shoulders. The lifeguard had a yellow flag out, meaning the surf was moderate, but it was enough to get me....

All of a sudden you feel a tug at your feet, and then BOOM! You're stuck. You can't swim forward, you only get pulled backwards, harder and harder, further and further out... So pay attention to the flags, if you have a lifeguard, and be safe!

WHAT TO DO: If you get stuck, let it take you out, and make sure you don't get pulled under. (LoL...duh ;P) When you don't feel the tug anymore, don't worry if you can't touch the bottom, just swim parallel to shore (preferably with the current) until you are a good distance away from where you got pulled out. Then let a wave take you back in, or just swim in yourself.

There are many classes you can take to help you learn how to handle this sort of thing. Try your local Red Cross. Yes, I know, if you don't live near water this must be pretty boring, but hey! It might help one day. LoL!

Off to go mess around outside....


Editor's Note: Make sure you ask a lifeguard to check that troublenc's advice is the best. I know when I've felt a rip current start to pull at my feet, I was usually able to just plant my feet and let it die down eventually. I did get pulled away once, though, and it was terrifying. What kind of oceanic experiences -- good and bad -- have you had? Swim safe, folks!


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