Fatal Rip Currents Menace New Jersey Shore Over Labor Day Weekend


In a harrowing sequence of events, a perilous rip current at the New Jersey Shore claimed one life and necessitated the rescue of numerous beachgoers over the recent Labor Day weekend. The tragedy unfolded despite stern warnings of dangerous sea conditions from the National Weather Service, which had been forewarning since the preceding Tuesday about a high risk of lethal rip currents at the New Jersey and Delaware Beaches. This advisory was slated to be in effect through the holiday and into Monday evening.

A fatal incident occurred in Beach Haven, where a trio of swimmers got caught in a rip current on Sunday afternoon. While two individuals were pulled to shore without injuries, a 22-year-old man succumbed to the powerful tide, as noted in an official statement from the Beach Haven Police Department.

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During the rescue operation, close to fifteen lifeguards formed a human chain to search systematically for the submerged swimmer. In tandem with this effort, five lifeguards traversed the deeper water, deploying paddle boards and a JetSki in an exhaustive grid search. The victim was located with the assistance of local and state authorities, yet sadly, was pronounced dead at the scene.

In another worrisome incident, five swimmers braving the waters after lifeguard hours were caught in the rip currents at Seaside Park and had to be rescued, said Andrew Casole, a spokesperson for the Seaside Park Police Department. This group did not include a 31-year-old man who swam separately and is now missing, with search and rescue operations underway.

At Belmar Beach, late in the afternoon another five people were caught in rushing water, necessitating their rescue. Witness Chizzy Meremikwu recounted to CNN affiliate WABC how an incoming tide swept them offshore. According to his account, cries for help echoed from the sea, raising alarm among beachgoers who alerted the lifeguards.

One of the rescued swimmers was unconscious, necessitating immediate medical attention. The victim was rushed to Jersey Shore University Medical Center while two others were also admitted to a local hospital for further treatment. Despite the safety measures in place, the weekend’s events stand as a bitter reminder of the unwavering power of nature.