Stranded surfer rescued at the famous Wedge

NEWPORT, Calif. - Big waves pushed up by distant Hurricane Marie triggered a rescue at the Wedge in Newport Beach Wednesday as waves up to about 15 feet crashed on the beach -- all before high tide when with the storm surge should peak.
 
Several lifeguards who were unable to get a worn-out surfer to shore because of the furious surf eventually swam him to a rescue boat shortly after 9 a.m. and all of them got out of the water in good shape.
 
Scores of other surfers sat on their boards and watched, unfazed as the waves continued to build at the world-famous surf break.
 
High tide comes shortly after 11 a.m., and that could cause more coastal flooding in low-lying areas such as Seal Beach.
 
Parking was at a premium near most surf breaks, with cars jamming public lots at Newport Beach and cars lining Pacific Coast Highway through 21-mile-long Malibu.
 
Some veteran surfers said the waves were the biggest they had seen in 20 years or so.
 
A surfer died in big waves just north of the Malibu Pier Tuesday.
 
Because of the waves, Portuguese Point, Sacred Cove and Inspiration Point are closed until Friday. The Malibu pier also has been closed down.   

The biggest waves are breaking on south-facing beaches, and forecasters expect the energy from the storm to peak today, though a high surf advisory will remain in effect through Friday.
 
"There is a potential for damaging and life-threatening surf across south- and southeast-facing of Los Angeles and Ventura counties," the National Weather Service stated, adding that breakers of 10-15 feet are possible.
 
"Surf this large will have the potential to cause structural damage and significant beach erosion," the statement said, and low-lying areas risk some minor coastal flooding around high tide.
 
Street flooding has been reported in Long Beach and Seal Beach, where various efforts were under way today, including the building of a berm.
 
"In addition, very strong rip currents and long shore currents will likely create extremely dangerous and life-threatening conditions," according to the NWS statement.

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