Beach hazard warning issued for Cook County, northwest Indiana

CHICAGO — The National Weather Service has issued an advisory for Lake Michigan beaches in Cook County and northwestern Indiana.

Life-threatening waves and strong rip currents are expected through Friday evening. According to the weather service, waves could climb as high as six feet. Beachgoers are advised to stay out of the water.

A small craft advisory has been issued until 6 p.m. Friday due to strong wind speeds.

Rip currents are powerful channels of water flowing quickly away from the shore; they occur most often at low spots or breaks in sandbars. Rip currents can sweep you into deeper water. Structural currents form along piers where longshore currents and wave action flow into the structure. Structural currents can sweep you into deeper water along the pier structure.