'The water is very dangerous,' oceanfront life guards talk about rip current dangers

While Jose is hundreds of miles away, it's still causing rough surf along our beaches.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- Life guards are on high alert for rip currents, and surfers are saying this weather is what they dream about.

"It is nice out here on the beach but, however the water is very dangerous," said Virginia Beach life guard, Sean Millard.

For Virginia Beach life guards, it's been a busy summer for rescues. "It's well over the hundreds for sure," said Millard.

Today, the rip currents have life guards extra concerned for beach goer’s safety.

"We have a lot of them that just kind of popped up on the own," Millard said.

The national weather service says rip currents could cause neck and spinal injuries.

"You can't really see them. Especially coming down here most people who don't know what to look for, it's hard to see," explained Millard.

So, while the worsening weather is raising the red flags along the beach, those rip tides mean fun rides for surfers.

"We look forward to the surf and the hurricanes, we do," said Smith.

Smith said this weather is good for his store’s business too.

"Any time there's surf in town it gets busier.”

Rip tides help surfers paddle out to where the surf. "The biggest rips are near like a jetty or a pier because of the way the current comes in and pushes back out," said Smith.

However, Smith and life guards both said it's good to take precaution. Know how to get out of rip currents by swimming parallel to the beach.

As for George, he said hurricanes are still scary even with good surf.

"Anything that happened like down in Key West and up Florida and Texas, we board the windows up."

Life guards said their patrols will continue until Jose moves north.

"We want you to enjoy it and be safe," said Millard. 

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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