JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Hurricane Irene has forced Coast Guard Station Mayport to take some of its rescue vessels out of service for the next couple days.
"Even if the storm misses us by a couple hundred miles, because we have heavy seas, high surf and waves, we can't afford these boats actually banging up against the pier," said Petty Officer 1st Class Christopher Evanson.
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They have put their fleet of 25-foot rescue boats on trailers and taken them to a storage facility in Jacksonville.
Evanson said that's going to greatly diminish the station's ability to respond during an off-shore emergency.
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"We're asking everyone to stay off the water," he said, "If the Coast Guard's ability to get out to you is diminished, then your life is at danger."