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Rip current

Rip current

E272/0133

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Credit

PETER CHADWICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PETER CHADWICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Rip current. Rip currents are strong surface currents returning seaward from the shore. They can occur at any beach when backwash from breaking waves is pushed aside by oncoming waves, and has to find an exit back to the sea. The presence of a rip current, or rip tide, can be recognised by a difference in the colour of the water (seen here as a lighter green at centre). Additionally, the waterline is lower on the shore near a rip current. Photographed at De Hoop Nature Reserve, South Africa.

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