Maximum alert in Baïnes: dangers, training, location… on which beaches should you be wary ?

This Saturday, July 6, 2024, departments along the Atlantic coast are on high alert for rip currents. This phenomenon that forms along the coast is particularly dangerous for swimmers, even the most seasoned.

These natural swimming pools hide their game well. The authorities are calling for vigilance in the face of the risks posed by the baïnes on the beaches of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Charente-Maritime, Landes and Gironde, reports BFMTV.

Maximum alert

Saturday and Sunday, the southern Atlantic coast is placed on "maximum alert" aux baïnes. Bathers are invited to approach the first aid stations on the beaches they frequent to ensure that they can swim there in complete safety. Furthermore, they must ensure that they remain in supervised areas.

"The beaches are marked by sea currents which can be dangerous. Every year, swimmers are swept away and drown. Today, these currents are particularly strong and could easily carry you out to sea,alerts the Charente-Maritime prefecture in a press release.

Thus, "it is essential to adopt responsible behavior based on vigilance and strict compliance with safety instructions". That is to say: only swim between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. on supervised beaches, pay particular attention to children, take your physical condition into account, warn loved ones before swimming, do not drink alcohol and pay attention to the flags.

What is a bath?

The baïnes form between the beach and sandbanks hidden under the water. They can be reminiscent of natural swimming pools. But in certain circumstances, they empty themselves and become real vacuum cleaners towards the ocean. The currents that develop there can carry even the most seasoned swimmers out to sea in just a few minutes.

In 2023, 14 people have died on the Atlantic coast, most of them from the baïnes. Seventy days had been identified as being at risk of baïnes in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region.

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