While getting ready for a medical appointment yesterday morning, I watched the weather forecast. North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory said “Don’t put your stupid hat on,” warning the public about the shoreline hazards coming up the coast with Tropical Storm Arthur. In the waiting room at Addison Gilbert Hospital in Gloucester, the TV was tuned in to The Steve Harvey Show, and entertainment and talk show I wouldn’t ordinarily watch. Steve’s special guest was a woman from Michigan named Vicki, whose son was drowned in a a rip current on Lake Michigan. Ever since that day, she’s made it her mission to educate other kids about water safety.
I’ve made a point of warning my Facebook and Good Morning Gloucester friends to beware of waves on our rocky shores and breakwaters. Two friends were washed into the harbor, and two acquaintances drowned off the rocks. Rip currents can be just as dangerous. Even on warm sunny days, with the storm hundreds of miles away, these currents put beach goers at risk when they enter the water. My best advice: “Don’t go in the water.”