Dangerous Currents

Learning about potential hazards before hitting the water can save your life. Dangerous currents occur throughout the Great Lakes and can pull a swimmer away from the shore. Swimming directly against currents, along piers or breakwalls can be deadly. Also, attempting to rescue others without a flotation device can result in drowning.

Learn More About Currents

  • Learn all about water safety tips and more at www.dangerouscurrents.org
  • Where are they and why do dangerous currents occur?
  • How can I avoid them?

Dangerous Currents Outreach Project

  • Learn about the effort to improve to improve beach safety, see: Dangerous Currents Outreach Project
    Michigan Sea Grant is leading this effort, supported by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Coastal Management Program.

Beach Safety Kits – Water Rescue Equipment

  • Michigan Sea Grant implemented plans to improve access to water safety and emergency rescue equipment at ten parks operated by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
  • Equipment includes USCG-approved adult and youth life jackets, rescue ring buoys and throw bags, as well as printed materials to increase awareness of swimming hazards, due to dangerous currents, structures and breaking waves. This project was supported by the NOAA Coastal Storms Program.
  • Sea Grant and DNR staff worked collaboratively to select and distribute the equipment to parks along the eastern shore of Lake Michigan in 2014.

Implementing Dangerous Currents Best Practices

  • Michigan Sea Grant is leading an effort, in partnership with Illinois/Indiana and Wisconsin Sea Grant programs to apply lessons learned in the Dangerous Currents Outreach and Beach Safety Kit projects regionally.
  • This project, beginning in June 2014 and ending in May 2016, will focus on new safety and rescue equipment in each Great Lakes state. Project partners will focus on developing state working groups with representatives from the National Weather Service, state government, first responders, universities and local non-government organizations.
  • By 2016, project leaders anticipate that hundreds of new water safety and rescue equipment will be installed, and targeted outreach messages, including video, media kits and more will be distributed. In addition, existing partnerships will be strengthened and new partnerships will be established to help reduce the loss of life due to dangerous currents and other swimming hazards.
  • The Implementing Dangerous Currents Best Practices project is supported by the NOAA Coastal Storms Program.