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Annual Pier Swim, Strong Rip Currents Keep OFD Lifeguards Busy Over Weekend

Oceanside CA— The Oceanside Fire Department Lifeguard Division had a very busy Labor Day weekend. A combination of the holiday weekend, warm weather and the annual Oceanside Labor Day Pier Swim brought thousands of people to Oceanside’s beaches.

A strong south swell, reaching up to 12 feet, and swift rip currents, resulted in 351 people being rescued over the weekend. “The calculated actions by the Oceanside Lifeguards resulted in not even one loss of life.” said Fire Battalion Chief, Felipe Rodriguez, in a statement released this morning.

Of those rescues, the Annual Oceanside Labor Day Pier Swim resulted in 105 ocean rescues due to a strong lateral current pulling toward the Oceanside Pier. In addition, over 4,000 contacts were made throughout the weekend to prevent swimmers from drifting into the strong rip currents, jetties, pier, and other hazards.

Extra lifeguard staffing was in place due to the anticipated large surf and the larger-than-normal beach attendance. 14 of the 15 lifeguard towers were open, along with a combination of jet skis and a rescue boat.

“As the ocean conditions heightened over the weekend, the Oceanside Lifeguards maintained a high-level of vigilance to ensure our residents and visitors were able to enjoy our beaches as safely as possible.” said the Chief.

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