Coast Guard warns maritime community of severe weather

SAN FRANCISCO — The Coast Guard is advising mariners and the public exercise extreme caution along the Central California coastline through the weekend, as large westerly swells move through the area starting late Thursday.

The National Weather Service is forecasting a storm system located in the north central region of the Pacific Ocean will impact the Central California coastline from Sonoma County through the Big Sur Coastline. The swells are forecasted to impact the region early Thursday evening and continue building through the weekend. The waves associated with these swells are expected to reach 15 feet or higher and be fast moving and powerful enough to wash people from rocks, jetties and coastal structures. Those visiting the coast and beaches this weekend should remain extremely vigilant in and around the water, as conditions will produce increased sneaker wave, rip tide and large breaking wave activity.

“The Central California coastline is some of the most scenic around and attracts scores of people looking to partake in all it offers,” said Capt. Greg Stump, commander, Coast Guard Sector San Francisco. “These forecasted conditions often draw people to the coast whether to surf, swim or experience its force firsthand. Please keep cognizant of your surroundings, know your limitations, and don’t underestimate the power of the ocean — sneaker waves have slain too many Central California beachcombers.”

Keep advised of this and other environmental conditions through the National Weather Service at, as well as monitor channel 16 VHF-FM for the most current marine safety information broadcasts.

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