Officials urging caution as people hit the water

Officials urging caution as people hit the water
Rescuers carry the woman who was swept away by a riptide in Lincoln City on Friday to an ambulance. She was pronounced dead at the hospital. (Photo courtesy: Cecil Wharff)

The following is a press release from Oregon Parks and Recreation:

Soaring daytime temperatures are bringing people out to Oregon rivers and the ocean shore in large numbers. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department reminds visitors to enjoy themselves, but to take care of their personal safety, and the safety of their friends and family.

On the ocean shore, remember:
*     Stay off logs and cliff edges, and well back from cliff bases.
*     Know the tide schedule. Avoid rocks and headlands that will be cut off as the tide comes in.
*     Don't turn your back on the ocean, and don't leave children unattended near the surf line. Sneaker waves - strong waves that can rush surprisingly far up the beach - are common in Oregon.
*     Currents are strong, and rip currents can carry you toward the ocean very quickly. Take care not to wade too far, and if caught in a rip current, swim along the shore to escape the current, then turn and come back to shore.
*     Keep an eye on each other and call 911 for help immediately in the case of an accident. Be prepared to give your location with as much detail as you can.

For rivers and lakes, remember these tips adapted from the American Red Cross:

*     The air is hot, but many of our rivers and streams are fed by snowmelt, and are cold enough to sap a swimmer's endurance very quickly. Know your limits; you are your own best lifeguard.
*     Never swim alone. Keep an eye on each other and call 911 for help immediately in the case of an accident. Be prepared to give your location with as much detail as you can.
*     Wear a lifejacket when playing on or in the water. Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
*     Ensure that everyone in the family learns to swim well.
*     Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child's life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
*     Even if you do not plan on swimming, be cautious around natural bodies of water. Cold temperatures, currents and underwater hazards can make a fall into these bodies of water dangerous.
*     Avoid alcohol use. Alcohol impairs judgment, balance and coordination, and swimming skills.

Visit respectthebeach.org before you travel to the coast. Whether inland or on the coast, remember fireworks are not allowed in state parks or on the beach at any time. The hot, dry, windy weather makes even legal fireworks dangerous to visitors and the park. Enjoy local displays offered by nearby towns instead.