Lee, G.; Hong, S.; Lee, C.; Kim, J., and Lee, J., 2016. Rip current zoning map to manage safety at Haeundae Beach, Korea. In: Vila-Concejo, A.; Bruce, E.; Kennedy, D.M., and McCarroll, R.J. (eds.), Proceedings of the 14th International Coastal Symposium (Sydney, Australia). Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 75, pp. 1452-1456. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
Rip currents are well-known in South Korea. Between July and August 2012, rescue workers covering Busan's beaches were on high alert for rip currents. Rescuers pay particular attention to Haeundae Beach near the Paradise Hotel because it is the frequent site of these currents. In July and August of 2012, 62 fast-moving rip currents were observed with maximum speeds of 2.5 m/s. During this period 187 people were rescued at Haeundae Beach after being dragged into deeper waters by these currents; fortunately, no casualties were reported. Authorities caution that ideal weather conditions for rip currents will persist, so this phenomenon could occur again at any time. In response to this public safety threat, the Korean Meteorological Administration plans to implement automatic monitoring systems for forecasting rip current generation at Haeundae Beach. In this study, we propose an approach for mapping the rip current risk to improve safety management at Haeundae Beach. First, we determine the spatial occurrence rate of rip currents using a field monitoring system based on closed-circuit television (CCTV) images and the Haeundae Current Model (HAECUM) rip current prediction system; the velocity and direction of the rip currents are also considered. This information is then combined with vulnerability factors such as the distribution of beachgoers and the capacity of lifeguards to produce a risk assessment map of rip currents at Haeundae Beach.