WAVY Demonstration at Lahinch Beach, Ireland, in collaboration with Water Safety Ireland
On the Saturday morning of the 18th of September, a team from BlueWise Marine, assisted by Water Safety Ireland, promoted a citizen engagement event at Lahinch Beach in County Clare on the west coast of Ireland. The purpose was to demonstrate the ability of the WAVY Littoral to capture and visually illustrate the ocean circulation in a beach environment, in which waves induce currents alongshore and cross-shore, i.e. rip currents. Rip currents are responsible for several fatal incidents with beachgoers since the currents can take unaware swimmers out of their depth.
The event started with engagement talks on the shore to explain what the currents are and what to do if caught in one, and to explain how the WAVY Littoral works. After this, a set of seven drifters were deployed by citizens and their trajectories were followed visually with the help of the smartphone apps developed in the project.
The most noticeable result from this event was the high level of interest generated in the people attending and their increased awareness of the movement of the water on the beach. Water Safety Ireland has also shown interest in repeating it on other beaches at the start of the 2022 season. To increase the outreach, a video has been produced with the trajectories observed on the day. Check it out!