The U.S. Coast Guard is warning boaters to stay off Tampa Bay and Gulf waters due to the approaching tropical storm.
While forecasters say Tropical Storm Karen won't directly hit the Tampa Bay area, the Coast Guard said adverse weather effects caused by a tropical storm or hurricane can cover hundreds of miles.
Authorities said recreational boaters and those involved in the maritime industry should be, "cognizant of dangerous weather conditions and take appropriate precautions to stay safe and minimize damage,” the Coast Guard said.
“Boaters, especially those from Tampa along the Gulf Coast to Yankeetown, are urged to secure their vessels,” a news release said. “Those who heed the warnings of the Coast Guard and local law enforcement authorities will keep themselves and first responders out of danger.”
The Coast Guard said boaters should take necessary precautions so as to not put themselves, the Coast Guard and other agencies at risk by going into bad weather conditions.