Bill has started churning up the ocean and a high rip current risk has beach goers and ocean rescue officials taking extra precautions. Beachgoers were already feeling the power of the waves Thursday afternoon. "It was just really strong, even the waves that were down by my ankles, were moving me, the big ones were almost knocking me over,” said Amy Minot of Ohio. Simon Sanders of Carolina Beach Ocean Rescue is well aware of the dangers with Bill headed closer to our shores. "Anytime we've got a hurricane or a tropical depression storm off shore, it increases the swell height, which increases rip currents, and beach erosion." Lifeguards are staying on their toes, watching out for inexperienced swimmers who could get caught up in the agitated ocean due to Hurricane Bill. "If we fly a no swimming flag or a double red, then we won't let people in above their ankles,” Sanders said. For surfers, the threat of a hurricane means killer waves. "This is the obvious surfer's paradise, we've all been praying for a little hurricane swell,” said Chandler Madray of Wrightsville Beach. But Sanders warns, even great swimmers should be extra careful. "If we do find surfers that are a little inexperienced, we'll have them exit the water also." Sanders says the best advice is to know your limits, and keep an eye out for the changing risks as the storm progresses.
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