BEACH OR BUST; HEAT, HIGH SURF COULD SWAMP AREA LIFEGUARDS.Byline: Michael Coit and Troy Anderson Staff Writer
With triple-digit temperatures forecast today for the San Fernando Valley San Fernando Valley
Valley, southern California, U.S. Northwest of central Los Angeles, the valley is bounded by the San Gabriel, Santa Susana, and Santa Monica mountains and the Simi Hills. and unusually high surf, lifeguards from San Pedro to Malibu are bracing for a busy - and dangerous - weekend.
Additional lifeguards were called from their fall hiatus to help full-time guards, but still there won't be enough to open all lifeguard towers, officials said.
``I'm kind of scratching (my head) - trying to get guys hired,'' said Kirk Thomas, a supervising lifeguard for Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. County at Zuma Beach. ``We're expecting pretty solid surf. It could be up to 10 feet. That's enough power to have respect for.''
The hot weather is expected to last through the weekend, with a slight cooling beginning Monday.
Friday's surf included breakers as high as 6 feet and sets up to 8 feet - and swells almost as high as the Venice Beach Fishing Pier - a rare sight. So powerful were the waves that some surfers broke boards, and lifeguards had to rescue at least 20 people.
Even higher waves were expected today with the full force of the swells generated by the storm that began off the New Zealand New Zealand (zē`lənd), island country (2005 est. pop. 4,035,000), 104,454 sq mi (270,534 sq km), in the S Pacific Ocean, over 1,000 mi (1,600 km) SE of Australia. The capital is Wellington; the largest city and leading port is Auckland. coast last week. Breakers could be between 4 and 7 feet with maximum sets up to 10 feet.
South and Southwest facing beaches will be hit hardest, including Zuma, Malibu and Topanga, as well as San Buenaventura
In between rides, surfers scanned the beaches Friday, hoping that Saturday would bring the perfect wave. They all downplayed the danger.
``The most dangerous things out here are the inexperienced surfers' boards flopping around,'' said veteran surfer John Albert, 35, of Pacific Palisades Palisades, cliffs along the west bank of the Hudson River, NE N.J. and SE N.Y., extending from N of Jersey City, N.J., to the vicinity of Piermont, N.Y., with a general altitude of from 350 ft to 550 ft (107–168 m). .
Pushing people to the beach are unseasonably hot fall temperatures that are forecast to scorch the region through the weekend.
Friday's highs included a record 100 in Simi Valley Simi Valley (sē`mē, sĭm`ē), city (1990 pop. 100,217), Ventura co., SW Calif. in an oil, fruit, and farm region; laid out 1887, inc. 1969. , topping the record of 99 set that day in 1996, and a record-tying 93 in Oxnard. Downtown Los Angeles Downtown Los Angeles is the central business district of Los Angeles, California, located close to the geographic center of the metropolitan area. The sprawling, multi-centered megacity is such that its downtown core is often considered just another district like Hollywood or reached 93 and Woodland Hills 98.
Today, temperatures are expected to hit 91 in downtown Los Angeles, 101 in Woodland Hills, 90 in Newhall and 94 in Burbank. Normal highs are around 80 downtown and the mid-80s in the Valleys.
``Right now we're well above normal, and we're going to go to slightly above normal Monday through Wednesday,'' said Joe Sirard, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Oxnard.
Santa Ana winds Santa Ana Winds may refer to:
1. Santa Ana wind, a local Southern California reference to Föhn winds, a meteorological phenomenon occurring as a layer of wind is forced over a mountain range -- drying the air -- which then passes over the crest and begins to move downslope -- have eased, but humidity remains low and the fire danger high. Downtown's relative humidity relative humidity
The ratio of the amount of water vapor in the air at a specific temperature to the maximum amount that the air could hold at that temperature, expressed as a percentage. Friday reached 19 percent with Van Nuys and Burbank only reaching 12 percent.
Lifeguards warn that heavy surf and associated riptides are powerful and dangerous. Surfers were catching big, dangerous waves Friday afternoon at Topanga and Malibu beaches, but they said they expected even better ``wave lines'' and larger surf today.
``It's getting bigger and bigger,'' said Blueberry blueberry, plant of the large genus Vaccinium, widely distributed shrubs (occasionally small trees) of the family Ericaceae (heath family), usually found on acid soil. They are often confused with the related huckleberry. Blervaque, a 27-year-old French woman visiting Topanga Canyon Beach. ``It's about head high now. I'd say about eight to 10 feet. It's popping. It's going off. In a half hour, I'm going to get the biggest waves. I'm so happy.''
Topanga resident John Jones, 32, who has surfed since he was 13, said the islands off California are defusing the waves, but he expected the waves to pick up Friday evening and Saturday morning.
``The ocean is nothing to mess with mess with
Informal, chiefly US to interfere in, or become involved with, a dangerous person, thing, or situation: he had started messing with drugs ,'' he said. ``It'll kill people.''
Strong swells also can be troublesome for small boats close to shore and entering or exiting harbors, said Chief Petty Officer Jerry Snyder of the U.S. Coast Guard.
One scenario that results in many rescues is when small boats, generally under 30 feet in length, maneuver and engines stall.
``Usually it's of little consequence because you have time to deal with it. But in times like this the water is more violent and pitches a boat from side to side. There's not a lot of time to react when there's a large swell,'' Snyder explained.
Tips for swimming in the ocean:
Swim near an open lifeguard station.
Check with the lifeguard for safe ocean and beach conditions and know your own ability.
If caught in a riptide, swim parallel to shore and head back to shore when safe.
3 Photos, Box
Photo: (1--2--Color) Top, a surfer rides the tube along a Malibu beach, while a fellow wave rider, above, catches some gnarly (jargon) gnarly - /nar'lee/ Both obscure and hairy. "Yow! - the tuned assembler implementation of BitBlt is really gnarly!" From a similar but less specific usage in surfer slang. air Friday thanks to larger-than-normal surf.
(3) Robert Diviaczky of Sherman Oaks inspects his surfboard, which was broken in half by a large wave in Malibu on Friday.
Gene Blevins/Special to the Daily News
Box: SAFETY TIPS (See text)