Officials warn of swimming dangers in San Luis Pass

- On holiday weekends, people usually flock to the beach and this Labor Day is no different. But officials are warning people to be careful of the areas in which they choose to swim and to take heed of the signs.

At San Luis Pass, "No Swimming" signs in both English and Spanish are posted along the shore. But people found swimming at the pass on Labor Day seem to take it more as a suggestion

Officials said San Luis Pass has seen more than a dozen deaths in years past because the tidal current there can suck people under.

"What happens is is there's all this water from Galveston all the way up to Houston that has to get out, and it sort of bottlenecks either into the both ends of the islands. The ship channel and the San Luis Pass are really dangerous. There's drop offs, there are strong currents and shifts every day," said Chief Peter Davis/Galveston Beach Patrol

One visitor who went to San Luis Pass says she certainly felt the currents in the suction.

"When I go in there, I really don't like it because when you stand in there, the sand starts pulling down, and I don't like that. I felt like it was like quicksand," said Stephanie Martinez, a San Luis Pass visitor.

A large sign prominently displayed on the Brazoria County side of San Luis Pass shows: NO SWIMMING. 5 PEOPLE HAVE DIED HERE IN 2013.

The sheriffs deputies are occasionally out on the Brazoria County side but not enough to prevent people from swimming.

Galveston beach patrol said since they put patrols on the Galveston side of the pass last year, no drowning to have occurred.

"On the weekends we put a vehicle out there that specifically targets people swimming in that dangerous area...we always maintain -- a number of years at least --  no swimming, no wading signs," said Davis.

Still, there will always be people who think they can handle the unpredictable waters. Official say it's paramount that swimmers follow safety recommendations. Some of those include never swimming alone and only swimming when a lifeguard is present.

"Part of the thing is you have to know your limits but you really got to understand the beach is really different than a pool or a pond, and even experienced fishermen and people that are out there a lot can get into trouble. So we have a number of safety recommendations disorder produces chances but ultimately your safety is up to you," said Davis.

The Galveston Beach Patrol said to remember that people who violate the no swimming rule in the San Luis Pass area can be fined.
 

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