Surfers brave intense conditions at Point Judith as hurricane Franklin pummels East Coast

NARRAGANSETT, R.I. (WLNE) — For most people, moderate-to-high rip current risks are enough to stay out of the water on their beach trip but with summer fading away, surfers at Point Judith in Narragansett were willing to take a chance.

“It’s definitely dangerous. But it’s also really fun. It’s like part of that is like the risk that draws people out, I feel like. And just the thrill of riding big waves,” said Angus Walters, who spent most of the day on the water.

Walters told ABC 6 News that the beaches were packed, and the waters were crowded on Wednesday, and the hunt for an adrenaline rush stretched well beyond New England.

“Me and my friend who’s still out there, it’s our second surf of the day. The first one was about two and a half hours, and the second surf was a lot better than the first one but worth the drive 100%,” said JD Jardine, who drove down from Canada for the day.

Jardine and his friend left Montreal at 3 a.m. to visit the Ocean State, knowing full well the surf was expected to be dangerous as storms kick things up in the southeast.

“You just got to — know what your limitations are, obviously, what you can handle out here, because you can see, there is quite a bit of rip current around and obviously, there’s quite a bit of rocks too. So, you’ve got to know your limits, otherwise, it’s cooking. It’s really good,” Jardine explained.

Lifeguards are likely weary of the surfer influx, as Rhode Island has seen several drownings this summer, and rip currents account for more than 90% of the National Weather Service’s reported surf-zone fatalities this year.

If you’re caught in a rip current, officials recommend to swim out of the current rather than against it, and if you can’t escape, try to float or tread water.

Categories: News, Rhode Island