PORTSMOUTH, Va. – The 5th Coast Guard District is advising mariners and swimmers throughout the mid-Atlantic region Monday to use caution this week. Tropical Depressions Eight and Nine are forecasted to impact beaches and waterways from North Carolina to New Jersey as they transit the Mid-Atlantic region during the next several days. Tropical storm-force winds are possible during the next 48 hours.
“Our primary concern is ensuring the safety of life at sea,” said Capt. William Lane, Fifth District Chief of Response. “We are encouraging all mariners, personal watercraft users, and beachgoers to make safety a priority as these two weather systems pass through the region.”
Mariners are warned to take the following precautions to protect their vessels and their crews:
-Check bridge schedules for any changes and plan ahead accordingly.
-If a storm is approaching, do not go out to sea.
-Double-check lines securing your boat if it is moored up and take precautions for items stored loosely aboard.
-Contact local marinas for advice on how best to secure your vessel.
-Ensure that you have the proper signaling devices aboard your vessel and the correct amount of Personal Floatation Devices.
-Have a float plan in place before getting underway.
Swimmers and personal watercraft users are advised to:
-Be extra cautious of rip tides. Check your local beach forecast before you leave for the beach and talk with lifeguards located at the beach.
-Do not go swimming on a beach without a lifeguard.
-Make sure to have a proper personal flotation device for yourself and each of your loved ones when on the water.
-For information on how to identify and avoid rip currents, visit the following NOAA link: http://ift.tt/
For additional guidance mariners are advised to contact their local harbormaster.