Young Women Was Dragged Out To Sea By Strong Currents
A Canadian woman was rescued on Wednesday after a rip current dragged her to sea in Cancun. She was rescued swiftly by a nearby hotel’s lifeguards.
According to reports, the Canadian national was swimming on Wednesday morning when a rip current began pulling her out to see. Panicking, she began screaming and battling against the current. As she screamed for help, two police officers who were on a beach surveillance patrol noticed her and immediately informed the lifeguards working at Secret’s – The Vine Hotel.
The lifeguards responded quickly and were able to bring the woman back to shore safely. She was treated for minor issues on the beach, but no information suggests she required any further treatment.
As with most seaside towns, a significant danger is the risk of drowning. Different beaches have different danger levels depending on the conditions of the surrounding sea.
Cancun’s beaches can often have strong rip currents. These are specific streams of water that pull directly away from the shoreline. In actuality, rip currents are relatively simple to deal with. Generally, they are only a few meters wide and a swimmer caught in one can either swim parallel to the shore until they break free from the current. If a swimmer is not strong enough to break through the side of the current, floating out with the current until it subsides is also a great maneuver. They don’t usually go more than a hundred yards from the beach.
Unfortunately, many swimmers are inexperienced with rip currents and, much like this incident, they panic when they feel the current drag them out. Often the swimmer will frantically splash and tire themselves out, which is when they are at risk of going under and drowning.
Cancun has some safeguards in place to help warn swimmers of the risks. Like many beaches, it uses flags to specify the danger level of swimming on any particular day. A green flag designates that the sea is safe for swimmers and conditions are good. A yellow flag warns swimmers to be cautious but it is still safe to swim, while a red flag means that the currents or surf are strong and swimming is not advised, although it is still allowed.
Other flags include a double-red, which means the water is closed to swimmers, and a purple flag which means that a significant form of marine life has been spotted near the shore. This could be a shark or jellyfish.
If there are flags up, that beach should be patrolled by lifeguards, but swimmers shouldn’t put themselves at risk just because they have some semblance of a safety net there. Visitors are generally advised not to swim when there is a red flag, and any travelers with children should have a close eye on them in these conditions.
Several recent events have not ended with successful rescues. Just last week a Paraguayan man visiting Cancun for a wedding was dragged out to sea. He was swimming in the evening when no lifeguards were present. A strong current pulled him out and he has not been seen since. Searches took place for days but a body was not recovered.
Many other incidents have taken place since the beginning of the year with many preventable with some preparation or common sense. Anyone choosing to swim in the ocean does so at their own risk and shouldn’t go any deeper than they are comfortable, especially if they are not a strong swimmer.
Lifeguards will always do what they can but using the resources available to understand the conditions will always be the surest way to remain safe at the beach.
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