SAN FRANCISCO – The Coast Guard is warning beach goers and boaters to exercise extreme caution while operating along the Northern California Coast tonight through Monday evening.
The National Weather Service has issued a rough bar advisory from 11 p.m.this evening until 9 p.m. Monday extending from Point Reyes to Monastery State Beach near Carmel.
It is forecasted that large swells, locally in the 10-15 foot range, will create strong rip currents at most beaches, moderate to large surf at reefs and sand bars, and potential sneaker waves at steeper beaches especially Monastery State Beach.
Sneaker waves can catch beach goers and fishermen by surprise, washing them into the sea. An excessive run up of waves onto beaches as well as strengthening rip currents should be expected in association with this front. People walking along the beach should not turn their back to the ocean. Families and dog owners should protect themselves and their loved ones from surf zones and avoid low-lying areas. Fishermen should avoid fishing from rocks and jetties.
Boaters are also reminded to check the weather before getting underway and ensure that their safety gear is up to date, and in good working condition. Basic safety items include: properly fitting lifejackets for everyone aboard, flares, a marine band radio and an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon.
The Coast Guard encourages all boaters to file float plans with friends or family. A good float plan includes a description of the vessel, names of the crew, a list of safety equipment on board the vessel, the estimated time of arrival at the fishing grounds and the ultimate destination of the excursion. The Coast Guard does not monitor float plans. Boaters should leave the float plan with a reliable person who can be depended upon to notify the Coast Guard in case you do not return as scheduled. Float plan templates are available online and can be found here.