When one thinks of the dangers of surfing, thoughts go to the monster waves of Hawaii’s north shore, the Cortez Banks or the areas in the South Pacific. These are obviously very dangerous waves to surf, but there can be dangers in places that have much more benign conditions.
When one thinks of danger in surfing, thoughts immediately go to the subject of sharks and although the odds of a shark attack are very slim, it does happen. Below the surface, surfboards look like marine mammals, large shark’s favorite meal, and although the attacks may be a mistake, they are usually catastrophic.
Drowning is another possible danger when dealing with large powerful waves; many times the victims are inexperienced and underestimate the power of the waves and currents. Wearing a buoyant wetsuit greatly increases the odds for survival.
Being pummeled on the bottom structure can lead to serious injury and there are few experienced surfers who do not bear scars from rocks and coral reefs.
Flying surfboards pose a continual danger, the sharp fins can lacerate, and even a light board ‘under power’ can cause unconsciousness.
Avoiding dangers is learned by experience, but dangers must be faced to gain it.