Pleasant weekend ahead at the Jersey Shore

     Surfers carry their surfboards across the beach as they call it a day, late in the afternoon, in Long Beach Township, N.J. (Mel Evans/AP Photo)

    Surfers carry their surfboards across the beach as they call it a day, late in the afternoon, in Long Beach Township, N.J. (Mel Evans/AP Photo)

    A pleasant weekend is ahead at the Jersey Shore after an active early Saturday morning. 

    A robust line of showers and thunderstorms moved through the region ahead of a front after sunrise. Once the front clears the area, the National Weather Service says to expect winds shifting to the northwest and rapid clearing across the New Jersey.

    Plan for sunny skies across the Jersey Shore throughout the afternoon. Drier air is moving in, and afternoon temperatures will be in the lower to middle 80s at the coast and middle to upper 80s inland. Winds will be gusty at times. 

    By tonight, high pressure will be moving into the area, and mostly clear skies are on tap. With drier air around, it will feel comfortable, and low temperatures are likely to be around 70 degrees.

    Sunday will feature mostly sunny skies and slightly cooler temperatures at the beaches. A light northwest wind will become southwest during the afternoon.

    There’s a moderate risk of rip currents. Always swim near a lifeguard. Ocean temperatures are in the middle 60s.

    Here’s how to identify a rip current: 

    A channel of churning, choppy water.
    An area having a notable difference in water color.
    A line of foam, seaweed, or debris moving steadily seaward.
    A break in the incoming wave pattern.

    Rip current speeds vary, with an average pull of 1-2 feet per second, but some can move as fast as 8 feet per second, which is faster than an Olympic swimmer, according to NOAA.

    Your first line of defense is to check the surf forecast before you head to the beach. NOAA updates the forecast daily. 

    In the meantime, watch this informative NOAA video on rip current safety.

    If caught in a rip current, NOAA advises:

    Stay calm.
    Don’t fight the current.
    Escape the current by swimming in a direction following the shoreline. When free of the current, swim at an angle—away from the current—toward shore.
    If you are unable to escape by swimming, float or tread water. When the current weakens, swim at an angle away from the current toward shore.
    If at any time you feel you will be unable to reach shore, draw attention to yourself: face the shore, call or wave for help.

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