Surf Safety: "Wait in a rip and get deposited back to shore"?

mk1's picture
mk1 started the topic in Saturday, 14 Jan 2017 at 2:45pm

So I hear this said from time to time - that if you wait in a rip it will eventually deposit you back to shore.

If deposit means the wave action will eventually push your dead body up on a beach 6-10km away then maybe I can see this being the case, but otherwise I can't work out how this is a thing people believe. The last time I heard it was at a BBQ a few months ago and I was pretty quick to shut it down.

Am I missing something here, because it seems like the biggest crock of shit and potentially very dangerous (although remaining calm and patient in a rip is a good thing overall)?

mk1's picture
mk1's picture
mk1 commented Saturday, 14 Jan 2017 at 2:47pm

Maybe it originally meant "deposited out the back' but through a series of chinese whispers it somehow became "deposited back to shore"?

happyasS's picture
happyasS's picture
happyasS commented Saturday, 14 Jan 2017 at 4:29pm

i think old mate japan down wollongong proved that theory is fucked.

Red Kev's picture
Red Kev's picture
Red Kev commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 7:23am

I once watched a booger get sucked out from the northern corner of Lighthouse Beach at Ballina. Straight out. Like the Japanese touro the other day, he wasn't panicked or seemed fazed at all, so let him go about his day. When I couldn't see him any more -- dunno how far that is, but it's a long way -- I called the Air Sea Rescue and they've gone out to look for him , but couldn't find him. After maybe 40 minutes, thinking, Geez, it's only a booger, I got bored and turned for home. And there he is, walking back up Shelleys on the northern side of Ballina Head lookout, still totally unfazed. The rip had deposited him back on the beach about 150 metres north of where he started. No sure if that's true of all rips. Certainly wouldn't just sit there while I drift over the horizon hoping that soon I'll be returned to shore. He was Japanese, too, from memory. No shit.

freeride76's picture
freeride76's picture
freeride76 commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 8:17am

certainly not true of some rips....the rip at Cosy Corner at Tallows in any kind of S swell will take you straight round Cape Byron and then out into the Pacific. As the poor Irish bloke who drowned there couple years back could testify.

I pulled a german chick out of a similar situation at Sharpes.....she was just about to go around the cliff line at Skennars and more than likely end up fish food in the cliffs. Luckily I had a big board in the car and I was able to tow her to safety.

mk1's picture
mk1's picture
mk1 commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 9:37am

Good point happy!
Red Kev - a one off fluke?
FR, maybe this goes with "if there are dolphins, there's no sharks" and "sharks don't mean to attack people, it's an accident" weird little niceties people like to tell themselves about the ocean

pointy's picture
pointy's picture
pointy commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 3:53pm

pretty sure it's this guy, "Dr Rip", that makes the claim about the rip bringing you back to shore

I think that it is also disputed by the SLSA

http://www.scienceofthesurf.com/drrip.html

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 4:06pm

Rob Brander? I've got his book in front of me now:

"Conserve your energy and let the rip take you out the back until it stops. If you are a good swimmer you can then swim along the beach in either direction and swim back in where the waves are breaking. If you are a poor swimmer stuck in a rip on an unpatrolled beach, then your only real option is to stay afloat and hope that the rip behaves like the one on page 122."

On Pg 122 Rob conducts one of his typical tests, tossing purple dye into the shorebreak and seeing where it flows. Sure enough, in this instance it goes out in the rip and back in through the bank.

On the same page is this text:

"On student field trips we throw oranges into rips to see how fast and far the rip is flowing. Often the oranges flow in a large circle and come back to the beach within 5 to 10 minutes. Sometimes the oranges head offshore never to be seen again. You just never know what the rip is going to do."

 

pointy's picture
pointy's picture
pointy commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 4:11pm

I've seen him do media interviews and he has a column in a local magazine and he never mentions the fact that sometimes you don't come back, only that you do come back - he's putting out a mixed message that could be dangerous.

or maybe we should all carry oranges with us.....

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 4:19pm

A couple of times this summer when the waves have been small I've deliberately drifted out in a rip with my eldest boy. He's just learning about the surf and the hands on approach works better than diagrams in the sand. He'll lay on his softboard, I'll wear flippers and hang onto his board, neither of us will paddle. We just remain passive and observe where it takes us. We're yet to be deposited back on the beach but I wasn't expecting that anyway.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 4:21pm

Can't recall him saying that, though I only catch the occasional column in 2515.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 4:27pm

"It's four times more likely than not that a rip will eventually deposit you into shallow water ."

pointy's picture
pointy's picture
pointy commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 5:07pm

Best to assume that the rip won't bring you back in & it's a bonus if it does

pointy's picture
pointy's picture
pointy commented Sunday, 15 Jan 2017 at 5:15pm

I rechecked what he said in 2515 & it was that there "is a good chance that they'll bring you back in to shallower water"

That's not what your experiments showed though.