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‘There will be red flags flying almost certainly:’ High rip current risk this weekend

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. — Jacksonville Beach Ocean Rescue wants to remind beachgoers to swim with caution this weekend.

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“The conditions are going to be very dangerous, there will be red flags flying almost certainly,” said Jacksonville Beach Ocean Rescue Captain, Rob Emahiser.

Over the Memorial Day weekend, ocean rescue said they had to pull more than 50 swimmers in distress from the surf.

On Sunday, a teen was reported missing in the water just south of the pier, and early Friday, 19-year-old Curtis Newkirk’s body was identified. A paddleboarder pulled his body in from the water Wednesday morning.

Read: Man, son rescued from rip current by marine deputies in Tampa, Florida

There was a high risk for rip currents then and The First Alert Weather Team said we can expect the same for this weekend.

“We have an onshore wind that’s been with us for the last couple of days, and that’s going to stay with us through the weekend,” said First Alert Meteorologist, Corey Sima. “That’s really going to keep things a little rough out at the beach.”

With these conditions, ocean rescue tells Action News Jax you should use extreme caution this weekend if you are going in the water.

Read: Body identified that was pulled to shore at Jacksonville Beach by paddleboarder

“The bottom of the ocean is torn up so a lot of sandbars that people like to walk along with lots of holes and where that hole is, that’s where the rip currents are,” said Emahiser.

Ocean rescue wants to remind beachgoers to swim with extreme caution.

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“We’re going to emphasize to everybody especially, please, please if you’re not an expert swimmer, consider staying out of the water and definitely no matter what you are doing try and by near a lifeguard on duty,” said Emahiser.

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