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Malibu Pier closed, surfer dies as big waves hammer L.A.-area beaches

Big waves hammer Southern California coast, forcing Malibu Pier to close.

The Malibu Pier was shut down Tuesday evening and an unconscious surfer was pulled from rough waters nearby earlier in the day as high waves began pounding Southern California beaches.

California State Park officials closed the pier after a piling was knocked loose Tuesday afternoon amid the big waves, officials said.

Around 11:30 a.m.,  Los Angeles County lifeguards pulled the surfer from Malibu Point north of the pier. Lifeguards said they used a rescue board and relied on the help of other surfers to get the man out of the water.

Rescuers performed CPR on the man, but he was later pronounced dead, authorities said.

County lifeguards said the high surf prompted the closure of Portuguese Point, Sacred Cove and Inspiration Point on the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

Earlier Tuesday, lifeguards at Cabrillo Beach were said that waves up to 15 feet were hammering the coast.

In Ventura County, waves up to 10 feet were reported, according to the National Weather Service.

In Newport Beach, city officials said that heavy traffic was causing delay of two hours or more near the the Wedge, a famed body surfing and surfing spot.

Officials warned beach-goers to stay out of the water due to the heavy surf and dangerous rip currents.

"Only highly experienced swimmers should enter the water," Newport Beach officials said.

Surfers across Southern California flocked to beaches to ride the big waves being caused by Hurricane Marie.

"There's a lot of rip," famed surfer Laird Hamilton told KCAL Channel 9 after leaving the water Tuesday.


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