Study the conditions before entering the water.
Observe the activities of others in the ocean.
Ask the lifeguards about current conditions.
Know your limits in the water.
Rip currents Beware! Rip currents are fast moving channels of water that can drag you out to sea. Knowing how to escape riptides can potentially save your life.
What you need to know if you're caught in a rip current:
- Stay calm, and don't panic.
- Do NOT try to swim against the current directly into shore.
- Swim parallel to the shoreline until you escape the current's pull.
- If you can't swim back to land, float or tread water. Face the shoreline, and call or wave for help.
As the saying goes, “When in doubt, don’t go out.” Don’t risk your life or the life of others if you have any hint of doubt in your mind. Even if you’re an in-shape athlete doesn’t mean those traits will always carry over to the ocean. The ocean has no mercy for anyone, so consider sitting on the beach or going to a safer beach nearby.
Cited from National Weather Service http://www.ripcurrents.noaa.gov