ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. – Last year, most Northeast Florida beaches closed because of the pandemic but opened just in time for Memorial Day weekend with restrictions. With coronavirus infections dropping around the country and more than 50% of adults fully vaccinated, there are NO restrictions in place at the beaches this Memorial Day weekend.
While there is only a moderate risk for rip currents this holiday weekend, it is important to remain calm if you get caught in one. Then swim parallel with the shoreline until you pull out of the current.
Remember, even if you’re a strong swimmer, go into the water with a buddy.
Marine rescue says you can easily spot a rip current by its foamy and choppy surface. The water in a rip current can be dirty brown, from the sand being turned up, and moves rapidly out to sea.
Rip currents are the most deadly weather-related event in Florida, claiming over 25 lives each year. We saw two drownings in Northeast Florida alone last week.
Lifeguards will be out on St. Johns County beaches from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Marine rescue will also be out patrolling.
St. Johns County says beach driving is allowed from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Passes are required.
The county is offering a free shuttle to Mickler’s Landing and the Pier from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday through Monday. It’ll run every 20 minutes.
Remember to keep a watch out for the warning flags.
And you’ll need that sunscreen if you’re heading out here — it’s a hot one!
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