Cyprus, Nicosia

Safety at sea

Updated: 3 months ago

The most dangerous and unpredictable situation at sea is when someone unexpectedly gets in a rip current. What is the phenomenon? At high tide, many waves quickly roll one after another, creating an increasing volume of water near the coast. Then the waves start returning to the sea/ocean at different speeds. That is how the rip current or reverse flow appears. The waves move back with such intensity that if a person gets into the rip current area, even being a professional swimmer, one will not be able to overcome the turbulent water flow and swim ashore. One needs to understand what is happening and know the technology of swimming out. 

If you find yourself in the rip current, it is useless to strive for the shore - this will cause a loss of strength. Just swim along the coast to get behind the rip. If the waves carrying you into the sea are so strong that you can’t swim sideways, stay where you are.  Relax, breathe in more air, and go underwater for the maximum possible time - you will not be carried away at such a speed there. Moreover, you can push from the bottom towards the coast to move in the right direction. The main thing is not to panic - the rip current lasts a maximum of 5 minutes. So you need to stay on the water and not waste your strength in vain.


How to understand there is a rip in front of you?

It is not always visible. But some signs are hinting there is a rip current near the coast. At first, it is a channel of seething water perpendicular to the shore. Second, the water in the rip differs in color - white or lighter - and goes into the depths by a strip of one and a half meters in width. The water around the rip can be blue or green and calmer. Third, sea grass particles go to the bottom and suck in. The most powerful rip current observed here was 50 meters wide. But such is a rarity. 

If you understand that a rip current is in front of you, do not enter the sea. The rips are so powerful that they can knock down even in the shallows.

Be cautious, and take care of yourself and your loved ones.

Coast Guard NC 158

Police 155

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