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lake michigan dangerous currents

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lake michigan dangerous currents

Scientists say it’s much more complicated than that. Tomorrow: Berrien County in Southwest Michigan seems to have more than its share of drownings. “Since we had that additional factor of the water fluctuating, they went into the water and there were rip currents and they were really strong, and we lost seven people in a five-hour period.”. And these Dangerous Currents happen in concert when there are Winds and Waves; i.e. These currents develop as a longshore current intersects a breakwall or peninsula where swimmers can be moved lakeward parallel to these structures. Dangerous currents and drownings go hand-in hand across the Great Lakes. Since 2015, there has been an increase in drownings in the Great Lakes. It's these currents that can make Lake Michigan very dangerous. But many are concentrated in Southwest Michigan’s Berrien Co. “People who might be familiar with a sandbar might find it’s either not there, or it’s changed shape, or it’s changed elevation, and they might find themselves in deeper water than they expected to.”. MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer, committed to achieving excellence through a diverse workforce and inclusive culture that encourages all people to reach their full potential. As the name suggestions, longshore currents move parallel to or the “long” way along the shoreline. Imagine a lake as a giant bathtub, with strong winds pushing water back and forth, gathering strength. You just happen to do this on cross-country skis. Michigan State University Extension, Michigan Sea Grant, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the National Weather Service coordinated a series of Dangerous Currents Workshops in three different locations in Michigan in June. Michigan State University Extension programs and materials are open to all without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, religion, age, height, weight, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status, family status or veteran status. This is made worse by the presence of a submerged or partially submerged sandbar connecting the beach to the island, which allows pressure to build behind the water and waves until it breaks through. The majority of these incidents occurred on Lake Michigan. But many are concentrated in Southwest Michigan’s Berrien Co. The 4-H Name and Emblem have special protections from Congress, protected by code 18 USC 707. They were only two to three feet,” Dodson says. Rip currents vary in size and speed and can be found on many beaches every day. “We’ve seen some pretty significant impacts when you get persistent wind direction and wave heights are higher.”. With Lake Michigan at record levels, minor lakeshore flooding could be seen Tuesday, according to the weather service. A channel current forms when the flow of water speeds up as it goes between the island and shore, like a bottleneck. Atkinson directs the university’s Great Lakes Program that serves to protect and preserve the Great Lakes. The workshops helped increase knowledge about dangerous currents by educating local, state and federal parks personnel, emergency responders, volunteers, researchers, educators and others about Great Lakes beach hazards. Swimmers should be aware of the kind of dangerous currents that exist in the areas where they swim to help avoid getting into a life-threatening situation. According to Mark Breederland, an educator with Michigan Sea Grant, water levels are extremely high. Rip currents will not pull a swimmer under the water. While they are tempting to swim in because they are often warmer than the lake water, avoid swimming in or near outlets. The National Weather Service is advising beach-goers to be aware of strong currents … He got caught in a rip current on Lake Michigan. Dodson maintains a life-and-death count of the currents’ impact. For more information, visit Michigan Sea Grant and NOAA's website on Dangerous Currents. How Rip Currents Work. Those currents develop because a lot of structures throughout the Great Lakes are solid all the way to the lake bottom. I have spent a huge amount of time in and around Lake Michigan over the last 52 years. Email: GreatLakesEcho@gmail.com Michigan Sea Grant is a proud member of the Great Lakes Water Safety Consortium, a group dedicated to promoting water safety and ending drowning in the region. Behind Lake Michigan, serene beauty and picturesque beaches hide a deadly secret. Powerful currents can also develop in open water. There are three main types of deadly currents in the Great Lakes. And with some simple math that chirping can be utilized to tell the temperature. It also has the fewest number of lifeguards. Free online course. Atkinson also said more people may be going to state parks and beaches on Lake Michigan this summer due to COVID. With high water levels, waves are able to sweep people off them, as happened to the boy in Frankfort.

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