Weather conditions demand extra caution at beach

400-4X4-ONLYThe weather forecast for St Johns County Beaches this weekend includes high winds, seas, and tides that could potentially create a dangerous swimming or driving environment; according to a report received by Historic City News from St Johns County Fire-Rescue and Beach Services.

With projections of north winds reaching 20 to 25 knots, seas of 5 to 7 feet, choppy inland waters, high tides late in the day, and isolated showers, beachgoers are encouraged to exercise caution while visiting the beaches during this time.

“If hazardous water conditions exist, swimmers are urged to avoid entering the water until conditions improve,” according to a St Johns County Fire Rescue spokesman. “In the event of a submerged beach driving lane or a flooded vehicle access ramp, Beach Services and the St Johns County Sheriff’s Office may temporarily restrict vehicular access to the beach until conditions improve.”

Beach Services’ goal is to retain as much vehicle access as appropriate during these conditions, however this is the largest combination of wind and surf that St Johns County has experienced this season, and at this point we are unsure of the impacts it may have on the beach. As always, use caution when entering the water. Late high tides may result in early closures to beach access gates on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Pedestrian access will remain open throughout the weekend.

St Johns County Washback Turtle Volunteers will be on the beach at all zones throughout the day on Saturday looking for juvenile sea turtles that may wash up on the beach. They will also be assisting with trash clean up. In the event of a sea turtle encounter, beachgoers are asked not to put it back in the ocean and to please call the Sheriff’s office non-emergency number immediately at 904-824-8304.

In the event of an emergency on a St Johns County Beach, please call 9-1-1.

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