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Boreal Emergency Preparedness Portal

Coast Guard warns about rip currents and cold temperatures in Lake Superior

Jul 13, 2019 07:23AM ● By Editor

By Dan Callahan of ABC 10 News - July 13, 2019


Large bodies of water can seem like a harmless way to cool down in the summer sun.
Although while swimming in certain areas can turn deadly in a moment’s notice.

It’s always good to be aware of your surroundings and to check the flag status on whether it is safe to swim or not in Lake Superior. This is due to the many possible rip currents that run throughout the large body of water.

These currents are constantly changing and they are accompanied with freezing temperatures in the lake which can be a deadly mix.

“Lake Superior is cold year round,” explained Petty Officer 2nd Class Terry Bailey, U.S. Coast Guard. “So not only are you potentially being swept out into deeper waters where you might not be able to swim or perform as well and keep yourself a float. You also need to add the factor of hypothermia, which is just due to the water temperatures fluctuating here year round.”

If you are also with another person and they are pulled out by the current then you do not want to get into the water as well. Instead find a way to help them by throwing a flotation device out to them and or calling for help.

It’s also important to not fight the current but to swim back diagonally back towards the shore.

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