Coast Guard urges caution among beachgoers, mariners in light of tsunami advisory for main Hawaiian Islands

300HONOLULU — The public is advised to use extreme caution and prepare for a tsunami wave forecasted to generate strong currents and surf throughout the main Hawaii Islands early Thursday morning as a result of a magnitude 8.3 earthquake that struck off the central coast of Chile Wednesday afternoon.

Visitors to Hawaii should heed all warnings from lifeguards and public health and safety officials. Although weather conditions may appear good, strong currents and surf may impact beaches late tonight and early Thursday morning. Even the best swimmers can fall victim to the strong waves and currents. Swimmers are urged to stay clear of beaches until local officials say the water is safe.

Mariners and beachgoers should monitor the progress of the wave through internet sites, local television, newspapers and radio stations. Mariners can monitor broadcasts regarding the advisory on VHF channel 16.

The Coast Guard is working closely with local and state first responder agencies and the maritime industry. Coast Guard assets are poised to respond to potential search and rescue cases stemming from any generated wave. The public is urged to heed all evacuation orders. If a tsunami siren sounds, go immediately to higher ground.

Additionally, mariners should secure their boats and boating equipment. It may be advisable for smaller boats to be pulled from the water and stored in a place that is not prone to flooding and is protected. Regardless of location, all loose items aboard vessels should be secured or removed.

Additional tsunami messages and developments can be found on the National Weather Service’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center page at: http://ptwc.weather.gov.

A PDF version of the Hawai’i Boater’s Hurricane and Tsunami Safety Manual can be found at the following link: http://ift.tt/1lxzJSk.

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