Keeping Swimmers Safe
August 2009 • Volume 8, Number 3
Life guard watching bathers at Ocean City, MD
rip current diagram

Beachgoers worry about sharks and lightning, but lifeguards worry about rip currents. Along most American beaches, they are the big killers. On any shore with breaking waves, channels of seaward-flowing water can suddenly open up and sweep swimmers and waders out past the breakers into deeper waters well beyond the beach. Most drownings on American beaches are rip current drownings. Lifeguards and scientists are working to save these swimmers. more . . .

In its heyday, Mayo Beach, like many resorts along the Chesapeake, drew large crowds of city-dwellers. Now a county park, it is in many ways only a shadow of what it once was. more . . .

One Carolina family picks a different place each year to get together. This year they have come to Mayo Beach for fishing, fun, and a family reunion. In an earlier era, they might have gone elsewhere. more . . .

Eroded Mayo Beach Beverly Beach Copeland Family Reunion Highland Beach
One swimmer's fateful encounter with a rip current.
more . . .

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We gratefully acknowledge support for Chesapeake Quarterly from the Chesapeake Bay Trust for 2009.

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