A crew from Coast Guard Station Curtis Bay, Md., trailers a 25-foot Response Boat-Small from the water to ensure its safety until the effects of Hurricane Earl are over in the upper Chesapeake Bay, Sept. 2, 2010. Prior to the hurricane impact, Coast Guard crews conducted harbor patrols to notify mariners of the possible danger and how to best prepare for it. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Brandyn Hill.
As Hurricane Earl approaches New England, the Coast Guard is actively tracking the storm’s progress and urging caution and preparedness for mariners and storm watchers. Hurricane force winds, heavy surf, strong storm surges, rogue waves, rip currents and coastal flooding are predicted.
Rogue waves near break walls and jetties are particularly hazardous to beach-goers during hurricane conditions. Sudden large waves can easily sweep storm watchers into the water or drag vessels off moorings or piers. Several individuals have been swept off of coastal rocks and jetties in New England, including one fatality that occurred in Gloucester, Mass. last week and the tragic death of a young girl that occurred in 2009 at Acadia National Park, Maine.
The Coast Guard advises mariners and beach-goers to exercise caution around heavy surf conditions and be wary of the dangers associated. Rip currents pose serious hazards to even strong swimmers and may develop in areas where they are not normally seen. Beach-goers are asked to heed posted warnings. Rip currents may not be visible from shore and may develop in advance of Hurricane Earl’s arrival.
The Coast Guard is working with local, state and federal partners to prepare for the arrival of Hurricane Earl. Air Station Cape Cod crews are conducting pre-storm flights to ensure mariners at sea are aware of the approaching storm as it moves up the eastern seaboard.
“The Coast Guard is in constant communication with our partners,” said Lt. Matthew Anderson, Sector South Eastern New England’s intelligence officer. “We are working to ensure that everyone has the best picture of where the storm is going and what impacts may be seen. It remains difficult to predict the exact track of Hurricane Earl, so we are preparing for all possibilities.”
Mariners and beach-goers are asked to keep a watchful eye. If something is out of the ordinary, don’t hesitate to call Coast Guard watchstanders or 911.
Below are Coast Guard emergency numbers according to state regions.
Rhode Island and Southern Massachusetts:
Sector South Eastern New England (508) 457-3211
Sector Boston (617) 223-3201
New Hampshire and Maine:
Sector Northern New England (207) 767-0302