Coast Guard warns of heavy weather in Northern California, urges caution

A 'no swimming' sign warns the public of heavy surf conditions .

A ‘no swimming’ sign warns the public of heavy surf conditions .

ALAMEDA, Calif. — The Coast Guard urges the public to use caution on or near the water as winter weather forecasts include heavy seas and strong winds in Northern California through Tuesday evening.

With large waves forecasted to reach 22 feet and wind gusts expected to exceed 40 mph, the public should check weather, surf and tidal conditions before getting underway, visiting the coast or inland waters.

If getting underway, boaters are urged to wear life jackets, file a float plan and check all emergency and safety equipment prior to leaving the dock.

Mariners and beachgoers are encouraged to take the following precautions to protect themselves and their vessels:

  • Stay informed and aware of weather and surf conditions. Check the current and expected conditions before heading out and multiple times throughout the day as conditions may change rapidly.
  • Check all emergency and safety equipment prior to leaving your home, which should include signal flares, an Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB), and cold weather/water survival gear.
  • File a float plan with a family member or friend, which includes information about the boat, the number of passengers aboard, the destination of where the vessel will be operating and an expected time of return.
  • Have a working marine-band radio and use VHF-FM channel 16 in the event of an on-water emergency.
  • If your dog is caught by a sneaker wave, do not go in the surf after your pet. Statistics show that dogs almost always get out on their own.

Additional weather information can be found at the National Weather Service website at www.wrh.noaa.gov.

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