Friday, January 21, 2011

Rescue Operation and Sneaker Wave Warning

Written by  Bob Froehlich

The Following information is from a HUMBOLDT COUNTY SHERIFFS OFFICE

On 01-21-11, approximately 9:45 a.m. the California Highway Patrol
(C.H.P.) dispatch center received a 911cell phone call regarding two
women being swept into the ocean at Dry Lagoon, Orick. C.H.P. dispatch
routed the call immediately to the United State Coast Guard (U.S.C.G.)
and the Humboldt County Sheriffs Office (H.C.S.O.). Sheriff’s Deputies
and a (U.S.C.G.) helicopter was immediately dispatched to the scene,
along with California State Park Rangers.

Upon arriving at the scene deputies learned two women, 27 years and 29
years, from Red Bluff, California, had been standing on a rock at the
beach near Dry Lagoon, when a large wave swept them and their two dogs
off the rock. The 27-year old female and one of the dogs managed to swim
out of the surf prior to rescue personnel arriving on scene.

As of 1:30 p.m. the missing female and dog had not been located. Rescue
personnel are still on scene searching.

The Humboldt County Sheriffs Office would like to remind the public that
area beaches can be extremely dangerous, especially this time of year
when winter storms generate large waves. If visiting local beaches
always keep an eye on the surf. This is especially true if small
children are with you.

An additional bulletin was released by the National Weather Service and
issued a "Special Weather Report" warning residents of the large swell
and sleeper wave dangers on the coast:

Fri., Jan 21, 2011-A long period northwest swell will produce deadly
sneaker waves along the coast today through Monday.

Sneaker waves surge high up on dry sand with enough force to knock
people down and drag them into the ocean where survival is unlikely due
to the combination of numbing cold water, turbulent surf and rip currents.

This may happen even during calm periods when the waves do not
seem that big. Large waves can strike without warning. Please be aware
that it is important to never turn your back on the ocean and to stay
far away from the breaking surf.


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