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New website provides bar crossing info, images

Post by Jeff Mayor / The News Tribune on Aug. 22, 2012 at 10:28 am with No Comments »
August 22, 2012 10:28 am
This image of the Depoe Bay, Ore., bar crossing was posted online this morning at a new website that provides bar crossing images and information for locations in Washington and Oregon. (NOAA image)

The U.S. Coast Guard and National Weather Service have develop a website to provide coastal boaters with weather and Coast Guard observations to evaluate bar restrictions and conditions.

You can access the website by clicking here.

The website gives boaters a place to not only see the entrance or bar through updated camera images, but also the Coast Guard’s evaluation of the bar conditions and any restrictions that may be in place.

“This is an excellent tool for the mariner”, Dan Shipman, recreational boating safety specialist for the 13th Coast Guard District in Seattle, said in a prepared statement. “Mariners can use this report, as well as tidal and other weather information to evaluate sea conditions to assist them in making a decision on their safety and ability to cross a coastal bar.”

Prior to the creation of the website, boaters had to rely on getting this information via a recorded phone message, scheduled Notice to Mariners safety information broadcasts or through a low power AM radio broadcast on channel 1610 in the local harbor areas. While these methods of notification will still operate, the website allows boaters to get the information in virtually any location. The website also contains important links to other National Weather Service information.

Although this information is provided to help a mariner make sound decisions it is not a substitute for experience, Shipman said. The Coast Guard urges all mariners to take a boater education course and wear a Coast Guard approved lifejacket when crossing coastal river entrances.

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