Search Launched for Man Swept Out to Sea Amid Rough Surf in Pacifica


A man was reportedly swept out to sea Tuesday morning near the Pacifica Municipal Pier, and rescuers have been unable to find him.

The National Weather Service has been putting out warnings for days about dangerous rip currents, high surf, and sneaker waves along all Bay Area beaches, and they even posted a video Monday morning of pounding waves at the Pacifica Municipal Pier. “Do not go near or in the water today,” the NWS tweeted this morning.


Please be careful along the coast as the NW swell comes in. Remember, never turn your back to the ocean!

— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) December 7, 2020

Do not go near or in the water today.

Extremely dangerous size, currents, and bone chilling water temperatures.

Enjoy the natural world from a safe

— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) December 8, 2020

Around 7:45 a.m. on Thursday, rescuers from North County Fire were called to the area of Beach Boulevard and Paloma Avenue, near the municipal pier in Pacifica. As the Chronicle reports, a “male victim was last seen struggling to remain afloat before he was pulled under by the strong current.” (KRON4 reports that the man went missing around 9 a.m.)

The Coast Guard joined the search with two boats and two helicopters, but the man remained missing as of 10:30 a.m.

This disappearance and rescue mission follows two that occurred off a San Francisco beach in recent days. A surfer disappeared off Ocean Beach Friday evening, but the search was soon called off as darkness set in and water conditions were dangerous. A second surfer was reported missing Monday evening off Ocean Beach, however he was later found nearby and was able to self-rescue.

The National Weather Service warns that in addition to high surf and dangerous currents, the “bone-chilling” ocean temperature can lead to what are known as “cold-water drownings.”

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