Square Waves Are So Dangerous You Should Get Out Of The Sea As Quickly As Possible

By maks in Interesting On 1st April 2024
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Square waves are totally mesmerizing, but they can also be a bit of a nightmare if you're not careful.

If you've ever lived close to a big stretch of water, you probably get that nature can throw some curveballs your way.

Credit: Wikipedia

There's this incredible yet risky thing that can happen in oceans across the globe, captured in footage that's both stunning and a bit alarming.

So, we all know what a wave looks like, right?

Those rolling mounds of water that march in a line towards the shore, peaking and then folding over back into the sea.

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Yep, that's the one. We're used to seeing them curve, but believe it or not, waves can go all geometric on us and turn square, which is as cool as it is potentially dangerous.

Seeing waves head for the shore is the norm, so picturing them crisscrossing at right angles to form squares seems a bit out there.

Credit: YouTube / John Bern

Yet, it's a real deal. From above, these waves create a pattern that almost looks like there's a giant grid under the water.

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What's actually happening is that the waves are the result of two different sea systems meeting up, with weather conditions causing them to crash into each other at odd angles.

These peculiar patterns, also known as cross sea or grid waves, might catch your eye, but they're often a sign of strong and dangerous rip currents lurking below.

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Square waves can tower up to 10 feet high and can pop up and vanish in just minutes. So, if you ever see them forming, it's your cue to get out of the water, stat.

These cross swells pack such a punch they've been known to cause boat accidents and even shipwrecks. 

And trust me, no matter how good of a swimmer you think you are, these waves are a whole different beast.

The European Space Agency (ESA) pointed out that between 1995 and 1999, square waves were behind a hefty chunk of maritime mishaps.

Credit: YouTube / Razvan Fiat

However, Surfers Hype mentioned that by the time square waves hit the shore, they've lost a lot of their oomph and aren't as terrifying or hazardous as you might think.

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But the advice stands: "Still, always be careful in the ocean and do not surf in waves if you feel you might be out of your depth."

A YouTuber named Razvan Fiat caught these waves on camera, safely observing from the shore as the water churned at conflicting angles before merging back with the sea.

These cross waves aren't exclusive to any one spot; they happen all around the world.

But if you're looking to see them in all their glory, Île de Ré—or Isle of Ré—in France is famously known for them.

Just remember, while they're a sight to behold, safety first!