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18 Dec

Is surfing risky in the rain?

by The Wave Team

Why is surfing in the sea after heavy rain a problem?

The increased water runoff from local towns can cause rubbish and all kinds of pollutants to pour into the sea after heavy rain or storms. Alongside this, coastal towns can get very busy during the summer months making sewage overflows more likely. This can lead to water contamination that causes a range of health risks, from bugs that cause diarrhoea and vomiting, to ear, nose and throat infections.

Californian study of more than 600 surfers covering over 10,000 surfing sessions from 2013 to 2015 found surfing in the days after heavy rainfall raised the risk for a wide range of acute illnesses.

Many beaches in Britain have excellent water quality but storms, heavy rain or a sharp increase in the numbers using the beaches can still cause problems. The main rule is to avoid surfing in water when there’s the risk of sewage or other pollution.

Thanks to campaigning organisations like Surfers against Sewage, you can easily find clean surfing beaches in the UK. According to their latest research in 2018, 98.5% of the 625 designated bathing waters around the UK are classified as excellent, good, or sufficient.

Check out the Environment Agency’s bathing water profiles and weather updates on surfing sites such as Magic Seaweed and Surfline.

Top Tip

As The Wave is an artificial lake, we don’t have these issues. We closely monitor water quality and you can surf every day, even if it rains.

Is it dangerous to swim in lightning?

Hanging out in large expanses of water can be risky when there’s lightning about. Even if the lightning is a few miles away, storms can move very quickly and the lightning can fire in all directions. It’s impossible to predict how close a strike might be and as a surfer you are likely to be the highest object on the water and at risk of being struck.

Top tip

At The Wave, if there’s lightning about we ask everyone to leave the water to ensure safety. If your session is cut short when you’ve been in for less than 45 minutes, we will give you a refund based on how long you were in the water.

As roofers, rain can sometimes stop work. We love surfing. For us The Wave will be the perfect place to come when it rains

John Advanced Surfer