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Rough Surf and Coastal Flooding to Continue Into Tuesday

National Weather Service

The persistent coastal flooding and rough surf over the weekend is likely to last into Tuesday before conditions finally improve later this week.

Northeast winds gusting between 30 and 40 mph continue to churn up the Atlantic Ocean, helping to push water into the coastline. The perigee (which often happens in the autumn months when the moon is closest to the earth in its orbit), a large hurricane in the open Atlantic, and background sea-level rise are also contributing to the ongoing coastal flooding. The National Weather Service has continued Coastal Flood Warnings until Monday evening for moderate coastal flooding near the times of high tide for the First Coast and Space Coasts. The Coastal Flood Warning also includes the St. Johns River Basin. Coastal Flood Advisories were issued farther south for the Treasure and Gold Coasts, where widespread minor coastal flooding is likely.

Long-period swells, generated by distant Hurricane Teddy east of Bermuda, is creating a high risk of rip currents, making conditions dangerous for swimmers. The Weather Service also issued High Surf Advisories for much of the Atlantic coast, where breaking waves of 8 to 12 feet are expected.

Speaking of the coast, coastal flooding & erosion concerns continue. Effects will be greatest around high tide, the next is from 11am-Noon pic.twitter.com/Kitxp0e5Yr— NWS Melbourne (@NWSMelbourne) September 21, 2020


Strong high pressure over New England is forecast to build into the Southeastern United States on Tuesday. As it does so, the pressure gradient -- or the change in pressure over some distance that causes the strong winds -- will weaken. As the winds slowly subside and we become increasingly removed from the new moon phase, coastal flooding and the rough surf should ease midweek. It is still likely that at least minor coastal flooding and beach erosion will continue into Tuesday along the Atlantic coast before conditions gradually improve.

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Ray Hawthorne