With some knowledge we can all be safe this summer

It seems that everyday there is another report of someone drowning in our great state. In the mitten state at any time you are only 6 miles away from a lake. With that knowledge we have to be aware of how unforgiving the water can be. Lately there have been high waves warnings aka high surf. Forecast.weather.com explains the definition as,,

A high surf warning means that damaging surf is expected or already occurring along the affected shorelines. A high surf advisory means that waves along the affected shores will be higher than normal. Residents and visitors are urged to avoid entering the water due to the dangerous wave action and strong rip currents.

Just recently, Mlive reported...

A 15-year-old who was pulled from a Georgetown Township lake has died, sheriff’s deputies said.

Then I read on Mlive a story that said...

Police have identified the man who drowned Saturday afternoon in rough Lake Michigan surf north of Holland, according to the Ottawa County Sheriff’s office.

The water can be a beast, but if you know your limits and have a healthy fear of the monster you will be fine!

Here are some tips to keep you and your loved ones save when they venture into the waves...

Buddy up! Always swim with a partner, every time — Even experienced swimmers can become tired or get muscle cramps, which can make it hard to get out of the water. When people swim together, they can help each other or go for help in an emergency.

Get skilled. It's good to be prepared. Above all, know how to swim. It's never too late to learn.

Understand where you are swimming. Swimming in an open body of water (like a river, lake, or ocean) is different from swimming in a pool. You need more energy to handle the currents and other changing conditions in the open water. Strongly consider wearing a personal floatation device in open bodies of water, even if you are a strong swimmer.

If find yourself caught in a rip current. Don't panic and don't fight the current If find yourself caught in a rip current, . Try to swim parallel to the shore until you can get out of the current, which is usually a narrow channel of water. Gradually try to make your way back to shore as you do so. If you can't swim away from the current, stay calm and float with it. The current will usually slow down. When it does, you can swim to shore.

Alcohol and water never mix. Alcohol is involved in many water-related injuries and up to half of all water-related deaths. The statistics for teen guys are particularly scary: One half of all teen male drownings are tied to alcohol use.

Remember to stay out of the water if anything causes you concern, be safe and be around to see another beach!

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