National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

You can significantly reduce the risk to yourself from rip currents by:

  • Know The Risk.  Be familiar with the Florida beach flag system (learn more!).
  • Swim Near Lifeguards.  The U.S. Lifesaving Association estimates the chance of drowning at a beach protected by lifeguards is just 1 in 18 million.
  • Never Swim Alone.  Be sure that someone knows where you are in the water, and can spot if there is trouble.
  • Learn How To Swim.   You should both know how to swim AND be familiar with how to swim out of a rip current. More information on that below. If you don't know how to swim or are a weaker swimmer, you should wear a life jacket.
  • If caught in a rip current, then wave your hands, yell, swim parallel.  
  • If someone has trouble swimming or is caught in a rip current, Alert the lifeguard.  If no lifeguard available call 9-1-1
  • Swimming at the beach often requires very good swimming skills.

National Weather Service Jacksonville, Experimental Beach Forecast Web-page (click here)

What Do Beach Flags Mean?

Ocean Rescue Websites and Information:

Observed Water Temperatures