Last Updated: Friday, September 3, 2010
Strong rip currents are threatening beaches along the coast as competitors are gearing up for the 25th annual National Kidney Surf Festival in Cocoa Beach.
Set up is underway and surfers have been in the water practicing this morning. The beach has been filling up, despite the fact the waves are definitely smaller out here there are still rip currents.
"I don't know, I kind of like yesterdays big waves better," said surfer Savannah Bradley.
Bradley, 17, of Cocoa Beach is competing in the NKF pro surf competition for women. The Brevard County native, who's competed around the world, is excited to be in her hometown. She was out Friday morning testing the waters and practicing for this weekend.
"I love competing on my home turf, kind of know the area so it's fun," Bradley said.
What was also fun was watching the tandem surfing competitors practicing their moves.
"It's kind of like ballet on a surf board," said tandem surfer Lance Maki.
Teams from France, Hawaii, and California have come to compete.
"So of the top ten teams in the world we have half of them here in Cocoa Beach for this weekend," Maki said.
Some call the waves perfect, but officials say the ocean is dangerous and deceiving. Even some of the pros say rip currents in recent days have been intense.
"I haven't actually seen them that bad here before," Bradley said.
Lifeguards have had a busy week. One surfer died Saturday in Satellite Beach, and 70 rescues were made in Brevard County.
Anyone going in the water should swim near a lifeguard tower.