Officials Warn Of Unguarded Beaches in Delaware - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Officials Warn Of Unguarded Beaches in Delaware

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DEWEY BEACH, Del. - DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police officers worked with the Delaware State Police Trooper 2 helicopter unit and Dewey Beach lifeguards Tuesday to locate and rescue a swimmer reported too far out in the ocean from an unguarded section of beach between Rehoboth and Dewey.

According to DNREC, after a Dewey Beach lifeguard responded to the 911 call but was unable to reach him, Trooper 2 arrived and located the swimmer, who had been swept one-half mile offshore at the south end of Dewey, where Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police aboard marine patrol vessel MP-Mike pulled the man from the water. The swimmer, who was visiting from out-of-state, was taken to Beebe Medical Center in Lewes for evaluation.

Officials not only warn about dangerous riptides, but also about swimming in unguarded beaches. In between just about every town and city in Eastern Sussex County are stretches of areas unguarded by lifeguards.

Elizabeth Powell comes to her beach house in Rehoboth to enjoy a peaceful vacation by the ocean, her house though is on one of those unguarded beaches. That's a fact that doesn't really concern her when she decides to cool off in the water.

"My swimming skills are limited but yeah I'm comfortable just going knee deep or something," she said.

Dana Isley and her family on the other hand are sitting right next to the lifeguard in Dewey Beach, and with several kids in tow, she said that's an important factor to coming here.

"I've always come at this exact spot, especially when my kids were younger," she explained. "It's just nice to know there's an extra set of eyes on your on your kids and these guys do such a great job here."

Multiple areas along Delaware's coast don't have lifeguards and the area is known for what officials says is a "strong and sometimes unexpected... rip current." So why does Powell risk it?

"I always come to the unguarded beach because it's quiet and I come here to relax," she explained. "I want to read and there's no noise, I don't have any disturbances."

And that's just the thing, according to Dewey Beach Patrol Captain Todd Frichtman, the reason there are so many unguarded baches is because those areas are less frequented by visitors. He added though that even if you want privacy, that doesn't mean you should get in the water.

"No one should do that, I don't do that myself, and I've been doing it for 36 years, no one should really swim in an unguarded beach alone" he said. "Without knowing... the water conditions, the conditions of the day, that particular body of water because this is a natural water body so there's always an inherited risk."

So even though all of the beach is technically open to swim, it doesn't necessarily mean that you should.
 

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