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Coast Guard warns debris hazards on Pittsburgh-area rivers

Mary Ann Thomas
| Tuesday, July 17, 2018, 11:54 a.m.
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in Pittsburgh.
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in Pittsburgh.

The near constant days of rains have swelled rivers carrying dangerous debris that can sink a boat, according to a warning issued Tuesday by the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in Pittsburgh.

The storms have brought “deadheads” — dead trees and limbs lurking just under the surface of water — into waterways, which is causing unexpected hazards, according to the Coast Guard.

“If a fiberglass boat strikes a deadhead, the boat could be damaged or even sunk,” according to a Coast Guard statement released Tuesday.

“The boat’s lower unit could be ripped off, causing a hole in the transom and make the boat inoperable.”

The Coast Guard advises boaters to appoint a lookout person to scan the water to spot deadheads.

For more information about vessel safety and the services provided by the United States Coast Guard and Auxiliary, visit www.uscg.mil and www.cgaux.org, respectively.

The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary is made up of uniformed, civilian volunteers who assist the U.S. Coast Guard in all of the Service’s missions, except for military and direct law enforcement actions.

Mary Ann Thomas is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary Ann at 724-226-4691, mthomas@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MaThomas_Trib.

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