U.S. Coast Guard expects busy Memorial Day weekend on Lake Michigan
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58)-- The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) is expecting to see more boaters and swimmers out on Lake Michigan for Memorial Day weekend.
BM2 Gabe Thomas told CBS 58 the USCG recommends making a float plan: letting someone know where you're going, how long you'll be out and when you get back.
"Check your equipment in your boat before you launch her for the first time in the year," Thomas said.
He also said swimmers shouldn't underestimate the strong currents along the beach. If you get pulled in, stay calm, swim parallel to the shore and call for help.
"Don't go any further in than you're comfortable with, and if you see your kids getting a little bit farther in or out from you, try to reel them back in a little bit," Thomas said.
While the temperature is warming up on land, Thomas said the water hasn't caught up yet. He said to be prepared for cold water around 54 degrees.
The National Weather Service releases hazard warnings that people can check online before heading to the beach.
Milwaukee Recreation is offering $5 swim lessons starting in June.
"Drowning is silent. Drowning is fast," Nicole Jacobson, a manager for citywide programs, said.
Swimmers of all ages will learn water skills ranging from staying afloat to self rescue techniques.