A 7-year-old girl died and a 4-year-old boy is missing after the children and their father were swept into the ocean along Oregon’s North Coast on Saturday.
Oregon State Police said 47-year-old Jeremy Stiles of Portland was carrying his two children along the Falcon Cove area midday Saturday when a wave pulled all of them into the ocean.
Emergency services responded at approximately 12:38 p.m. Saturday. Stiles was able to get out of the water, and a Manzanita police officer was able to recover the girl to shore. Stiles and his daughter were transported to Providence Seaside Hospital, where she later died.
The 4-year-old boy is still missing. The U.S. Coast Guard sent helicopters for the boy Saturday, but the search was suspended at sunset. Coast Guard officials said Sunday the search is completely suspended, and won’t start again unless there’s more information.
The National Weather Service issued a beach hazards statement for the North and Central Coast of Oregon that remains in effect until 4 p.m. Sunday. The agency urges people to use caution as sneaker waves can knock them off their feet and quickly pull people into the ocean. The waves can also lift or roll large water soaked logs, which can lead to injury or death.
U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Steve Strohmaier urged people to stay away from rocks and jetties, as a rogue wave could take someone out to sea.
“Stay away from these dangerous surf conditions,” he said. “These tides are unpredictable, and the surf with this weather is a dangerous mix — Mother Nature’s not forgiving.”
Tides were at their highest this weekend as king tides hit the Oregon Coast. The next round of king tides will hit the coast on the weekend of Feb. 8.