Coast Guard warns of coastal hazards in Southern California

national weather service logoLOS ANGELES — The Coast Guard warns beachgoers and boaters of a heavy coastal hazard warning issued by the National Weather Service for Southern California beaches. The coastal hazard warning will remain in effect from late Wednesday evening until Monday evening.

A large west to northwest swell will continue to move across California coastal waters. Heavy weather and high surf will affect all west and northwest facing beaches beginning Wednesday evening through Monday evening. Surf is expected to build to 20 to 30 feet with the highest surf occurring on beaches with west exposure Friday and Saturday evenings.

Beachgoers are advised to use extreme caution when walking near the water. The Coast Guard recommends that during this period of high surf, beachgoers remain well clear of the beach and shore where waves make landfall. Large waves and strong rip currents will also increase the risk of ocean drowning. Sneaker waves can suddenly wash people off of beaches, rocks or jetties and capsize small boats near shore. Large shore break can lead to injury and wave run-up.

If you witness an individual swept into the current, do not take your eyes off the person and do not attempt to rescue them by entering the water, call 911 immediately.

Remember, swim near a lifeguard. If caught in a rip current, remain calm and don’t fight the current. Swim in a direction following the shoreline.

In the event that your vessel or someone aboard your vessel is in distress, call the Coast Guard on VHF channel 16, or call the Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach Command Center at 310-521-3805.

The advisory can be found on the National Weather Service’s website which is located at http://www.weather.gov.

The Coast Guard urges mariners to always:

  • Wear life jackets while on the water.
  • Always have a working marine-band radio on board.
  • Carry marine flares on board the vessel.
  • Ensure bilge pumps are operational and vessels are secure for heavy winds and rain.
  • Stay Informed – The public should be aware of weather conditions and monitor progress through local television, radio and internet. Check the current and expected weather and water conditions before heading out, and be aware that weather conditions can quickly change.
  • File a float plan with friends, family members and local marinas before heading out. The list should include the number of passengers aboard the vessel, vessel’s destination and expected time of return.

For more information on boating safety, visit www.uscgboating.org.

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