The Coastal Flood Warning issued by the National Weather Service for the Central Coast, in effect until midnight tonight, has been updated. Even higher surf is possible than originally predicted. Ocean water will rush much farther up beaches and jetties than normal. Structures and roads located immediately at beach level will be inundated by waves and damaged by debris. Many beaches, jetties, and rocky outcroppings will be covered by deep water. Several state parks have been closed as of this afternoon. Large logs can be pushed farther up beaches, resulting in damage to structures and posing a significant risk to beach-goers. Beach erosion is possible.
Offshore buoys reported significant ocean swell heights up to 36 feet this morning with a dominant wave period of 17 seconds. Significant wave heights early this afternoon were still near 30 feet. The swell will slowly subside late this afternoon through tonight, but remain above 25 feet through late evening. The swell will produce 35 to 45 foot breaking waves along the beaches through this evening. Highest potential wave heights through this evening could reach 50 to 60 feet.
The extremely large surf combined with a higher than normal tide this afternoon will likely result in flooding of low-lying areas along the coast. Locations particularly vulnerable are the Willapa Bay and vicinity, Seaside, Nehalem, Tillamook and Florence. Early this afternoon tidal flooding was noted in Nehalem.
A Coastal Flood Warning means that flooding is occurring or imminent. Coastal residents in the warned area should be alert for rising water, and take appropriate action to protect life and property. Visitors should remain off beaches and avoid narrow access areas where escape routes could be cut off by rising water. Exercise extreme caution along and near beaches.