May 27, 2008

Beach Warnings Up in Florida

South Florida beaches are displaying warnings for swimmers about rip currents and jellyfish in the surf after deadly Memorial Day incidents, officials said.

Over the weekend lifeguards had to rescue at least six people from rough water at Crandon and Haulover beaches, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue spokesman Lt. Elkin Sierra told The Miami Herald on Tuesday. Similarly, in Volusia County at least 150 people had to be pulled out of currents along the beach.

A riptide apparently pulled a 15-year-old Sanford boy to his death off New Smyrna Beach on Memorial Day. The teenager was swimming with two friends when he vanished at about 4:30 p.m. His body was found about three hours later, reported Local 6 News.

The same day a 49-year-old Fort Pierce man drowned trying to help his sons, ages 11 and 14, who had become caught in strong rip currents. When the man swam out to help he became caught in the currents off Bob Graham Beach and could not be revived by Martin County fire rescue teams, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Dangerous conditions continued Tuesday with red and purple flags on many local beaches, although the strongest currents were now reported north of South Florida.