Tuesday, May 29, 2007

A Word of Caution

Late Sunday afternoon, about 6 o'clock, islanders were alarmed to hear sirens wailing. I had just come off the beach when I saw first the deputy's vehicle, next Park Service trucks, then the EMS pickup come screaming down Highway 12 with blue lights flashing. The Park Rangers stopped to pick up the lifeguards (they had just gotten off duty), then rushed up the beach. I could only think the worst.

Sadly, my fears were confirmed. Somewhere north of the campground a swimmer had been swept out to sea and drowned.

I had noticed rip currents forming. The lifeguards had even posted a sign near their stand to keep people safer. Unfortunately, rip currents can be deadly. And people (especially those not familiar with ocean swimming) often underestemate the power of the surf. Rip currents, in particular, can overpower even the strongest swimmer in an instant.

Please enjoy our beaches. They are among the best, cleanest, and most beautiful in the country. But learn how to recognize rip currents and how to escape from them (they are narrow and powerful, but swimming parallel with the beach will let you get out of their grip). And remember, the National Park Service provides lifeguards at the beach just north of the airstrip. Don't hesitate to use that beach.

Our sincere condolences to family and friends of the young man who lost his life on Ocracoke over the weekend.


Take a journey back in time with our latest Ocracoke Newsletter. You can capture some of the thrill of riding on the old mailboat Aleta by clicking here.


  1. Anonymous2:27 PM

    The EENA Project has recently supplied Ocracoke Island Realty with videos and information for all of the rental houses with information on rip currents. They show how to recognize them and how to get out of them. This is very good information for our visitors to have. Vacation should be a break from life, not the end of it.
    You can get more information at www.eenaproject.com
    Spread the word.

  2. I've added a link to the Eena Project on our home page. I'm sure it will help. And thank you for supplying our rental cottages with this important information.

  3. Anonymous12:14 PM

    We are very sad to hear that yet another life was lost due to rip currents. The information The Eena Project provides is free to real estate companies and hotels/motels etc. We will be having the 1st Annual Rip Current Awareness Day on June 30th at the Nags Head Kitty Hawk Kites store. Among many other things, we will have all materials available to those that still need them for their houses. Check out our website for more details. www.eenaproject.com
    We do not want to see any more drownings on these beautiful beaches.

  4. Anonymous8:03 AM

    In an interesting twist, travel restrictions in the international travel scene have led to US travelers to "rediscover" vacation rental within the US. One of the most beautiful states in the US is Hawaii, which has seen an increase in domestic travelers due to greater travel and safety restrictions in international travel. So the next time you are thinking of taking an exotic vacation, think of hawaii vacations where you can take a great vacation in beautiful tropical surroundings, with exotic traditions and don't even need a passport.


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