The city has temporarily closed the Seal Beach Pier. A padlocked gate closes off the wooden part of the pier before the tower structure on the pier.
Assistant City Manager Patrick Gallegos and Seal Beach Police Capt. Nick Nicholas both confirmed the pier was closed Wednesday, Jan.. 11.
The Seal Beach Police Department issued a formal announcement of the closure on Friday, Jan. 5, citing due damage to the pier caused by from high surf and wind conditions.
During the Monday, Jan. 9, City Council meeting, Public Works Director Iris Lee said staff was waiting for safer water conditions to assess the damage done to the pier. According to the Jan. 5 SBPD announcement, the pier was damaged last Thursday night, Jan. 5. The damage included the boat ramp used by oil platform workers. (Lee was promoted from interim Public Works director to permanent Public Works director. City Manager Jill Ingram announced Lee’s promotion at Monday’s council meeting. )
According to Lee, on Thursday, Jan. 5, and Friday, Jan. 6, the city had high surf with waves measuring 15 feet and higher. (Sun employees observed the high surf and took pictures. District Three Councilman Michael Varipapa also sent the Sun a photo of the surfers.)
“We did hear from our Marine Safety team that this is probably the highest we have had in the past 15 years,” Lee said.
Lee told the council that the pier would remain closed until staff can confirm that the pier was safe for the public.
Lee said other piers along the coastline had suffered damage.
During the nighttime hours of Thursday, Jan. 5, the area around the pier experienced high surf and wind conditions.
As city of Seal Beach personnel monitored and prepared for this storm, the decision was made to temporarily close the Seal Beach Pier out of an abundance of caution.
Overnight, a portion of the pier became damaged including the boat ramp used by oil platform workers.
Seal Beach Marine Safety, Public Works, and Police departments, along with the Orange County Fire Authority, had been actively monitoring the storm and taking steps to prepare for any issues related to the extreme weather, including checking water pumps and deploying additional resources and signage.
The pier will remain closed until it has been repaired and deemed safe for use.