Coast Guard urges caution as heavy weather approaches Southern New England

Petty Officer 3rd Class Sam Edes braves the weather to secure a 29-foot Response Boat-Small Wednesday, Sept. 30 at Station Woods Hole, Mass. The crews at the station moved this boat onto a trailer in preparation for Hurricane Joaquin, which is expected to impact the Northeast. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ross Ruddell)

Petty Officer 3rd Class Sam Edes braves the weather to secure a 29-foot Response Boat-Small Wednesday, Sept. 30 at Station Woods Hole, Mass.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Ross Ruddell)

BOSTON — The Coast Guard urges mariners and residents in Southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island to prepare for heavy weather as it moves into the area over the next few days.

“I strongly encourage individuals who enjoy our coastal areas to take precautions when recreating in or near the water for the next few days,” said Capt. John Kondratowicz, the Sector Commander for Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England. “This weather can be dangerous for mariners and others who do not recognize the risks associated with such a storm.”

The Coast Guard recommends the public remember these guidelines:

STAY INFORMED: The public should monitor the progress and strength of the heavy weather through The National Hurricane Center, newspapers, the internet, and/or local television and radio stations. Boaters should monitor VHF-FM Channel 16.

SECURE BOATS AND BOATING EQUIPMENT: Owners of boats and recreational watercraft are urged to secure their gear in preparation for heavy weather, making them less likely to break free of their moorings or to be otherwise damaged.  Boats that can be trailered should be pulled from the water and stored in a place that is not prone to flooding. Mariners who leave their boats in the water are reminded to properly secure life rings, life jackets, and fenders.  Users of recreational watercraft like kayaks, standup paddleboards, and surfboards are urged to store this equipment in an area well away from the water to prevent them from going adrift.

For information on how to prepare your boat or trailer for a hurricane, please view the following site: http://ift.tt/1m8Z4VB.

STAY CLEAR OF HAZARDOUS BEACHES AND COASTAL AREAS: Even the best swimmers and experienced fishermen can fall victim to the strong waves, winds, and currents caused by heavy weather.  Swimmers are urged to stay clear of beaches until local officials say the water is safe. Rip currents and undertows can drag swimmers away from the beach. Individuals fishing along breakwalls, beaches, or jetties are strongly urged to exercise caution and evaluate the risks associated with fishing along coastal areas that may experience high winds and breaking waves.

Visit the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s site for tips to prepare, plan and stay informed at http://www.ready.gov/.

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