I come down here frequently and have never had a problem or felt unsafe. One reason may be that the city leaders, who want to attract tourists down here, have had the brilliant idea of locating the Sheriff's Station next to the Lifeguard Station--smack in the center of all the I.B. action! Looks peaceful, doesn't it?
This is the Dempsey Holder Safety Center, named after Allen Dempsey Holder, a man who started surfing in this area in the late 1930's, became a lifeguard and as the surfer's guru he was considered to be King of The Sloughs.
The southwest end of Imperial Beach on Seacoast Drive is a bit remote from all the activity found on this street, but it is an interesting area.
This is a Wildlife Refuge and we are not allowed to tresspass on it. The balance of nature had been all but destroyed until many agencies and commissions took charge, closed the area to public access and levied hefty fines--$1,000.00 or more--for tresspassing.
There is an observation deck, especially popular with bird watchers, for those interested and going along the beach is okay, just not in the marshes.
Keep 150 feet away from the pier while swimming or surfing! When the tide is rough, the bottom of the pier is a dangerous place to be.
Refusal to follow the direction of a Lifeguard can be a felony.
There are lots of rules at all beaches and that is so for Imperial Beach as well.
Here you see a Lifeguard putting up a Red Flag. The message tells us that there is no surfing nor swimming between that Red Flag and the nearest outcrop, be it a pier or a jetty--in this case a jetty. These flags are raised as water conditions change and today the current is such that it will smash you into the jetty.
A Green Flag indicates only swimming, soft rafts and soft boogieboards are okay in the area.
A Yellow Flag means that limited swimming is okay, but no rafts.
Each beach or park area may have particular rules and regulations you must comply with. Signs, such as this will be posted with the appropriate information.
The rules may seem a bit silly at times, but there are always an underlining reason for them. Especially at the beach, dangers are multiplied as are the warnings.
At the top of the pictured sign, not easy to read, unless you click on the picture for a full view, is information about dialing 911 and for general calls there is a "business" number.
Throughout the USA 911 is the number to dial in an emergency. It is not a general information number and the lines of 911 should not be tied up for frivolous matters. In fact a fine is charged for doing so.
However, in the event of any real emergency dial 911, and you will receive prompt assistance.
Under normal circumstances the air along the beach is clean, clear and refreshing. Not on this day. The winds have been blowing from north/east to south/west (Santa Ana Winds) and have brought with it some of the devestation of the great fires burning in San Diego County (October 2003) for weeks.
This is a smoke and ash filled sky at 11:00 in the morning. This condition is rarely seen because we don't usually have such huge fires, though exactly four years later there was another such fire and we had to endure these conditions once more.
During a time like this it is unhealthy to venture outdoors, even at the beach.
Pacific Ocean at San Diego's beaches: Imperial Beach and Coronado Beach looked quiet when i was there but... be careful.
There are beach lifeguards on duty during summer season but... who knows? At Imperial beach there is a watch tower - do lifeguards sit there in the summer?
Imperial Beach is a relativly safe place to be, especially near the beach. Most dangers and warnings are related to the do's and don't's on the beach, at or in the...