SAN FRANCISCO — The Coast Guard is urging boaters and beachgoers to exercise caution in and around the waters along the Northern and Central California coast due to forecasted strong swells Sunday morning through Sunday evening.
Exceptionally strong rip currents and large shore breaks are anticipated to impact all west and northwest-facing beaches from Sonoma County to Monterey County. Strong rip currents are typically more frequent and stronger near jetties, inlets and piers. Swimmers are encouraged to swim near a lifeguard, and if caught in a rip current, to swim parallel to the coast to escape the current before swimming for shore. Beachgoers are advised to remain aware of the current ocean and weather conditions, stay well away from the edge of the water and off of exposed rocks and jetties.
“We encourage all boaters and beachgoers to remain especially cautious on and near the water today,” said Lt. Wes Geyer, command duty officer at Coast Guard Sector San Francisco. “We stand ready to respond if boaters and beachgoers find themselves in distress.”
The Coast Guard offers the following safety tips on the water:
* Stay Informed – Be aware of weather conditions and monitor the progress and strength of storms through local television, radio and internet. Be aware that weather conditions can change quickly. Check the current and expected weather and water conditions before heading out.
*When recreating on the water, whether boating or kayaking, paddle boarding, or kite and wind surfing, always have a working VHF-FM radio. Mobile phones may not be reliable on the water, and the Coast Guard has the ability to determine your general location when you call with a VHF-FM marine-band radio, which can effect a quick response when mariners are in distress.
*Wear life jackets while on the water. In 2013, 84 percent of boating-related drowning victims were not wearing life jackets.
*File a float plan http://ift.tt/1NQqb5D with friends, family members or local marinas before heading out. A float plan should include contact information, the number of passengers, the vessel’s destination and expected time of return.
*Do not boat under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances, because it can impair your judgment, vision, balance and coordination. Boat motion, vibration, engine noise, sun, wind and spray can accelerate impairment.
*Keep children informed of water safety. The Coast Guard encourages educating children on water safety. For more information on boating safety for kids, visit http://ift.tt/1jnhoL2.
* Divers should evaluate their own physical condition as well as that of their equipment, never dive alone, and be willing to cancel their diving plans and choose another activity if ocean conditions are too rough.
*Dog owners are also reminded to protect their pets from rough waves and not to attempt to rescue their dog from a surf zone. It is important to remember to keep calm and allow the dogs to swim out on their own.
For more information on how to protect your pets, please visit http://ift.tt/1mMtu32.
For more information on the current weather conditions please refer to the following links:
For information on rip current safety, follow this link: http://ift.tt/168JWNY