Double Red flags flying on the beach

Discussion in 'All About SoWal' started by Kurt Lischka, Mar 23, 2007.

  1. Kurt Lischka

    Kurt Lischka Admin Staff Member

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  2. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    and that means YOU! Not only would you be risking your own life, but often times, the person who drowns is the person who goes in to rescue. :nono1:
     
  3. Bluznbeach

    Bluznbeach Beach Lover

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    Last edited: Mar 23, 2007
  4. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Thanks for the link to the story. From the story, "Scott D. Johnson, 47, of Urbana, Ill., was one of two people who went into the water to help four people who were in distress on a raft. Johnson is believed to have gotten trapped in a combination of a rip current and a long shore current running parallel to the beach, according to the Sheriff?s Office.
    The four people who were on the raft made it to shore. Johnson was taken to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast, where he was pronounced dead at 4:30 p.m."

    This is exactly what I was talking about. Tyically, I keep a life jacket in each of my cars, just in case I am put in a situation of having to go in to help someone. I cannot think of a situation where I would think about trying to rescue people in a raft who don't need rescuing. Are people watching too many hero movies on tv? I don't get it, unless it was his young children on the raft, and if it was, why would he let them go out in rough seas with red flags flying? Not being there in the moment, it is tough to make the call of what I would do, but I have a good idea.
     
  5. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    If I were a betting man, and I'm not, I would bet you that I can take photos of at least 20 people in the water in Seaside, today, in a very short period of time.
     
  6. JoshMclean

    JoshMclean Beach Fanatic

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    This is exactly what I was talking about. Tyically, I keep a life jacket in each of my cars, just in case I am put in a situation of having to go in to help someone. I cannot think of a situation where I would think about trying to rescue people in a raft who don't need rescuing. Are people watching too many hero movies on tv? I don't get it, unless it was his young children on the raft, and if it was, why would he let them go out in rough seas with red flags flying? Not being there in the moment, it is tough to make the call of what I would do, but I have a good idea. ​
    [/quote]

    I like the idea and agree with those statements.
     
  7. Ocean Lover

    Ocean Lover bean

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    :::shaking my head::::
     
  8. kathydwells

    kathydwells Darlene is my middle name, not my nickname

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  9. pgurney

    pgurney Beach Fanatic

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    On the beachcam, it looks like the flags are one red and one purple. So does that mean the water is closed to the public?
     
  10. LivinEasy

    LivinEasy Beach Comber

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    I feel the problem started with Walton County only flying a yellow flag yesterday until the incedent occurred. The yellow flag does not post the same fear in people heads, and make pople respect the ocean the way that a red flag does. On another note, I feel that they went a little overboard by posting a double red flag. I took off work and surfed most of the day yesterday, and while there was a little current, there was nothing that a swimmer with any experience could not handle. On my way to work, I noticed that we are still flying a double red today. Now that makes no sense at all, because the gulf resembles a lake today more than an ocean closed to the public because of high surf. All this is accomplishing is a negative impact on tourism. Now, while my prayers go out to the families of the victims, people need to understand that it is up to them to make wise decisions. People will always drown as long as there is water, but a little common sense goes a long way.
     
  11. TNJed

    TNJed Beach Fanatic

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    There's a lot of shoreline out there and conditions which are present in one area are probably not the same throughout. It could be red in one place and green in another, but the SWFD is going to go with the roughest conditions they find because rip currents move and the potential is there for a calm area to turn rough.

    I would think it's much easier and more prudent to just say the beach conditions are ______ flagged today instead of Grayton is green, Seagrove is yellow, Blue Mountain is red, etc.

    Yes?
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2007
  12. Kurt Lischka

    Kurt Lischka Admin Staff Member

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    A single red is a high hazard warning and purple is marine pests present (jellyfish) but not closed to swimming.
     
  13. seacrestkristi

    seacrestkristi Beach Fanatic

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    That is really scary :eek: I love swimming in the Gulf. What's the difference in a long shore current and a rip tide.:confused: Do they pull you under and pound you around? It must be impossible to stay afloat even if you don't panic. :dunno: Has anybody ever been caught in one of these scary things? That life jacket idea is a really good idea, SJ. Could you still get pulled under with it on though? I'm sticking with green flags from now on. I have to admit I'm guilty off dipping in the edge when the flag is yellow, like in 2-3 feet, but no more. You could probably still be in danger cuz maybe the yellow flag is about to get changed. :blush: Some nice person could get hurt just tryin' to save me.:doh: :whack:
     
  14. TNJed

    TNJed Beach Fanatic

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    I don't know the technical differences between all the rip tide/current terms but the overall condition is the same I believe.

    An undertow is that force you feel pulling the sand out from under your feet as a wave recedes. While this force can get very strong and knock you off your feet what it won't keep you from getting back to shore. That's what a rip current does. It's a circular current that pulls away from shore and out to sea.

    [​IMG]


    When people get caught in one they usually panic and try to swim straight back to shore against the current. Like trying to swim upstream in a river.
    What you should do is swim parallel to the shore until you are out of the current and THEN you can make your way back to the shore.

    If you're in a river you don't swim upstream to reach safety. You swim sideways to reach the shore. Same thing basically.
     
  15. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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  16. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I disagree with a couple of things. Yesterday at Grayton Beach around 2pm, the waves were crashing very hard on the beach. A good swimmer wouldn't have been to easily able to swim out there, especially if they weren't used to rip currents. Secondly, in my opinion, if there is a drowning, I think there needs to be a shift to dbl red if not already, to warn other people of the hazard. Actually, I am all for raising the black flag at half mast to really get the point across. Screw tourism, we are talking about giving people more knowledge to make better decisions and possibly saving their lives.

    From what I could see today for a breif stop at the beach, was what should have been a yellow flag day, but was a single red. It certainly was lake-like, but I could not see any rip currents from my location, though there was a medium east->west push. I did see several people.
     
  17. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I like to ride the rip currents in my kayak, because it gets you past the break lickidy split. Rip Currents do not pull you under, only push you out from shore. When caught in one, it is best to just relax and tread water. You should be able to practically float without much effort. The rip currents may only push you out anwhere from 25 - 100ft, then once you get kicked out of the rip current, the waves will practically push you back to shore with little effort. I think riding them in a kayak can give you the best idea of how they work.
     
  18. katie blue

    katie blue kt loo

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    Well, that picture sure brightens up an otherwise sad thread.

    Cutie patooties!

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Beach Runner

    Beach Runner beats on hood

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    Miss Kitty is in SoWal? I knew Mermy was.
     
  20. kathydwells

    kathydwells Darlene is my middle name, not my nickname

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    This picture is from last year....
     

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