New documentary teaches rip current safety, survival ahead of National Beach Safety Week

CHICAGO (WLS) -- National Beach Safety Week begins May 23. Each year, as summer begins, the U.S. Lifesaving Association makes an effort to remind beachgoers to use caution when going into the water.

One of the greatest dangers facing beachgoers are rip currents. These strong, narrow currents can appear on any beach, cutting through the lines of breaking waves. Each year, rip currents are responsible for over 80,000 rescues by U.S. lifeguards, and approximately 100 drownings.

The new documentary film, "Rip Current Rescue," aims to educate people on the dangers of rip currents and how to escape them. Filmed across the nation's most popular beaches - from California and the Gulf Coast, to Florida, North Carolina and New England - "Rip Current Rescue" features dramatic stories of survival, captured on camera. This compelling documentary was made possible with the support of an Australian couple, Steve and Erin Kudzius, who experienced their own rip current tragedy in 2016. Over the last six years they have dedicated their lives to helping reduce rip current deaths by supporting beach safety educational projects. They also doubled as executive producers on this first-of-its-kind production.

"Rip Current Rescue United States highlights how quickly a simple swim can turn to tragedy because too few people can identify a rip. More importantly, it teaches audiences how to understand rip currents and shows what to do if they ever find themselves in their grip," said Steve.

In addition to screening on PBS, the documentary is also available for rent on Vudu Fandango, iTunes, YouTube, Google Play and Vimeo. Click here for full details.
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