MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - A massive wave whipped across a sidewalk near South Pointe Park in Miami Beach, injuring six people and sending them to the hospital.
Rough surf combined with king tides resulted in the massive wave that injured people at South Pointe Park, at around 10:45 a.m., Friday.
The powerful rogue wave pushed water past a sidewalk, and the people who were on it went flying into Government Cut. It also slammed a bike against the railing.
Miami Beach Fire Rescue on Friday raised two red flags for a high surf advisory until 8 p.m. warning the public that it’s not safe to go into the water.
Police closed off an area of the park, as they investigated the scene.
According to Miami Beach Police, six people were affected by the powerful wave; they were all taken to the hospital.
A witness took pictures and showed victims with cuts on their arms and legs. One person appeared to have a head injury.
“I have never seen the water this turbulent, ever,” said area resident William Schachte.
Schachte and another witness, Tim Carr, saw the dangerous conditions from their condo building, and they biked to the park to get a closer look.
“I was really kind of shocked,” Carr said. “It’s kind of the perfect storm between king tides this month and, I think, the remnants of Ian.”
Ocean Rescue units jumped into the water to save the people who fell in and were pushed into the rocks, like a surfer who said the rescue was not easy.
“The current is pulling out; there is no way to swim in,” he said. “The lifeguard really saved me and got hurt in the process, he did, and I really appreciate it, man.”
7News spotted a man getting treatment after he, too, was banged up in the surf. He left with bandages on his arm and foot.
Video footage from a nearby building showed just how high the surf was, as it covered the sand and reached the shrubbery along the concrete.
The water was so high in Miami Beach that some lifeguard stations had to be moved to higher ground.
“It is highly recommended that beachgoers understand the dangers associated to king tide, like rip currents and high surf conditions, which can be very dangerous and at times deadly,” said Miami-Dade Fire Rescue spokesperson Erika Benitez.
Residents in high-rises along the beach captured the white caps and waves from stories up.
Folks in Key Biscayne also saw the same sight in this spot, as water was pushed well past the dunes.
“It might be sunny, but when you have waves like this and this kind of action, really be careful out there,” said a bystander.
Friday night, 7News cameras showed the area where the wave hit still roped off, 11 hours after the incident. Park rangers said it’s unclear when it will reopen.
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