Bathers and anglers cautioned about strong rip currents with full moon

Suthentira Govender Senior reporter
The NSRI has cautioned that spring tide this week may result in strong rip currents. File image
The NSRI has cautioned that spring tide this week may result in strong rip currents. File image
Image: 123RF/benaung

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) has warned bathers and anglers to be cautious of a full moon spring tide that could result in stronger rip currents.

The NSRI said from Monday “high tide will gradually get higher and low tide will retreat to lower than normal leading up to the peak of the full moon Spring tide on January 6 — a full moon micro moon.”

“The concern is that bathers and anglers who are not aware of the full moon spring tides will be caught off guard.”

The institute warned that rip currents “can be stronger in places during a spring tide”.

“We appeal to bathers and anglers to be cautious and bathers should only swim at beaches protected by lifeguards, swim in the safe swimming areas lifeguards post using their red and yellow flags.”

The NSRI’s Mike Vonk said many of South Africa's beaches have powerful rip currents that can sweep swimmers away from the beach to behind the surfline within minutes.

“A rip current will not pull you under the water, but will pull a swimmer away from the beach. If caught in a rip the most important thing is not to panic.

“Swim out of the current at 90° to the direction in which you are being pulled and use the waves to swim back to shore. Or flip on your back and float until the current runs out of strength and you can swim back to the beach,” he said.

The warning comes after five people drowned at Durban's North Beach on December 17 when they were caught in a rip current.

TimesLIVE


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