NWS: Mariners should expect gale force wind gusts, freezing spray tonight

     Lady Gertrude heading into the Manasquan Inlet on Jan. 7, 2015. (Photo: Jerry Meaney/Barnegat Bay Island, NJ via Facebook)

    Lady Gertrude heading into the Manasquan Inlet on Jan. 7, 2015. (Photo: Jerry Meaney/Barnegat Bay Island, NJ via Facebook)

    A quick moving Arctic front will cross coastal waters this evening, delivering gusty winds and a threat of freezing spray, forecasters say.

    Mariners should expect gale force northwest winds, gusting up to 45 knots, to peak this evening, according to a bulletin issued by the National Weather Service office in Mount Holly, NJ. 

    “Operating a vessel in gale conditions requires experience and properly equipped vessels,” the bulletin advises. “It is highly recommended that mariners without the proper experience seek safe harbor prior to the onset of gale conditions.”

    Forecasters are also concerned about the possibly of freezing spray, resulting in moderate accumulations of ice on vessels.

    “Operating a vessel in freezing spray can be hazardous,” the bulletin warns, adding that mariners should be prepared to take appropriate counter measures, such as keeping firefighting equipment free of ice. 

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