Watch Out For Inshore Holes At Santa Monica Beaches: Lifeguards

SANTA MONICA, CA — As larger surf and low tides hit Santa Monica beaches, lifeguards are warning people to watch out for inshore holes.

Low tides this week exposed the usually hidden hazards along the shorelines at Los Angeles County beaches, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department Lifeguard Division.

“Inshore holes are one of the leading causes of ocean rescues in Los Angeles County especially in the winter and spring time when the ocean floor becomes uneven due to larger surf,” officials said.

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While the inshore hole appears friendly and calm for swimmers during a low tide, as the tide fills in this same inshore hole will become hazardous, officials said.

Here are a few things to consider before swimming or surfing:

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  1. Look at the difference in depth of water between the children (knee/waist deep) and the adjacent sandbars that are nearly dry. As the tide fills in, the inshore hole that was knee/waist deep on the low tide will become deep enough for swimmers to be unable to touch the bottom.
  2. Notice how the water moves through the inshore hole. The inshore hole becomes a collection point for all of the water coming onshore via breaking waves. Water moves off the shallow sand bars, into the deeper inshore hole, and back out to sea. Rip current formation is highly likely in this location.
  3. While highly visible on low tides like this, inshore holes can be difficult for most beachgoers to identify especially on higher tides. These hazards exist close to shore (hence their name) meaning they are dangerous for all beachgoers, especially children.

Visit the lifeguard department’s website for more information about potential beach hazards and other safety updates.

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Watch Out For Inshore Holes At Santa Monica Beaches: Lifeguards

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