Coast Guard Urges Boaters to Stay Off Water

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Coast Guard is urging boaters to stay off the water Friday, Saturday and Sunday due to the expected foul weather from Tropical Storm Noel traveling near the First Coast.

A small craft advisory is currently in effect and is expected to continue through the weekend. Inland waterways are expected to be choppy and weather conditions are expected to worsen as Tropical Storm Noel approaches the Jacksonville area.

The Coast Guard is recommending that boaters stay off the water during Jacksonville’s Sea and Sky Spectacular at Jacksonville Beach, Fla. The Coast Guard’s search and rescue capability could be reduced as the weather conditions worsen.

“We want everyone to enjoy the air show this weekend as best they can. But this weekend’s weather forecast makes it unsafe for boaters to do it on the water,” said Capt. Paul Thomas, commanding officer of Sector Jacksonville.

The Coast Guard also reminds boaters to secure their vessel before the storm arrives. Boaters should also ensure that any gear above deck be properly stowed and secured. Loose gear or an unsecured boat could appear as a debris field and could trigger an unnecessary search by the Coast Guard.

A small craft advisory is issued by the National Weather Service when seas are expected to be greater than seven feet and sustained winds are between 20 and 33 knots for more than two hours.

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