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LI weather: Beach temps in 80s, rip-current risk

Parking field 6 at Jones Beach is already

Parking field 6 at Jones Beach is already packed early this morning. (July 5, 2013) Credit: Jim Staubitser

Thanks to sea breezes, temperatures Friday at area ocean beaches were in the low 80s, the National Weather Service said, with the thermometer in Islip hitting a high so far of 87.

Islip's temperature is above the 81-degree norm for the day, but well below the record -- 102 set in 1999, said Dan Hofmann, weather service meteorologist based in Upton.

Still, on this extended holiday weekend -- which usually means heavy traffic to Long Island beaches -- there is a high risk for rip currents, the National Weather Service said.

The service on Friday released a statement regarding the high risk, which runs from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Atlantic beaches.

"Rip currents are powerful channels of water flowing quickly away from shore," the statement said. They "occur most often at low spots or breaks in the sandbar and in the vicinity of structures such as jetties and piers."

The service also urged swimmers to pay attention to posted signs about swimming restrictions and to talk to lifeguards and beach officials about any surf hazards.

"If you become caught in a rip current, do not panic," the statement said. "Remain calm and begin to swim parallel to shore. Once you are away from the force of the rip current, begin to swim back to the beach.

"Do not attempt to swim directly against a rip current."

Most of the weekend calls for sunny skies and daytime temperatures in the high 80s with mild winds from the southwest, the service said.

There is no rain in sight until late Sunday afternoon, when scattered showers could move in. Chance of precipitation is 30 percent.

With Patricia Kitchen

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