BEWARE of the SANDBARS!
We hate having to put out this reminder so soon after another tragedy but it seems warranted. As of this writing, 2 people have drowned this year alone on the Southend Sandbar. PLEASE BEWARE and DO NOT go out there. Not only are you risking your life but the lives of those who would come to your rescue.
SOUTHEND SANDBAR DANGER
The sandbars. which stretch out over a mile on the south end of Tybee Island do not appear menacing. In fact, they look very inviting at low tide and that is where the problem is. If you go out at the wrong time in the tidal cycle you may have only a few minutes before the waters begin to rise. When the tide turns the water rises very quickly and with a very large volume of water moving over the sand. It can very easily knock an adult off their feet with such force that it is impossible to regain your footing, carrying you very quickly into deep water. Even when the water looks calm the current can be shockingly strong. Over 50 people every year require rescue with one or more drownings per year in this area. Please do not put your life at risk by going out in this area of the beach, as well as the lives of any rescuer that comes to your aid.
Correction: Water weighs 65 pounds per cubic foot
NORTH BEACH WARNING
Similar to the South end of the Island, there is a new warning you need to be aware of at the North Beach. Walking out into the ocean on the sandbar near Polk Street can have dangerous consequences. Treacherous surges from passing container ships can come in fast without warning. These strong currents can knock you down, sweeping you out into the channel which is challenging even for the most experienced swimmer to make it back to the shore. This part of the beach is not guarded by lifeguards. If there is someone in the water needing help please dial 911.
KNOW HOW TO SWIM – NEVER SWIM ALONE – IF, IN DOUBT, DON‘T GO OUT
Rip Current Guide & Warning Flag Chart
Tybee Island beaches are subject to extreme rip currents. The longshore current runs parallel along the eastern seaboard, formed by wind and wave energy crashing and distributing energy along the shoreline. Rip currents are common on the north and south ends of the island, where rushing currents enter and exit the Savannah and Wilmington Rivers. These tidal currents violently collide with the longshore current, generating turbulent water movement. Small rip currents can also occur on the face of the beach during low tide. Strong sweeping currents flow between breaks in shallow sand bars creating dangerous swimming conditions. – Info via Tybee Marine Science Center.
STAY SAFE FOLKS!