Coastal Cities Brace For First King Tide Event of 2013

SUNSET BEACH ( — Oceanfront cities are preparing for another day of ankle-deep seawater in low-lying communities as unusually high “king tides” are expected to pull the Pacific farther ashore than normal Thursday.

King tides as high as 6 feet 9 inches are expected to hit coastal communities around 7:30 a.m. Thursday.

Occurring several times a year, king tides happen when the Earth, moon and sun align in a way that increases gravitational pull on the Earth’s oceans, raising water levels several feet above normal high tides. The non-scientific term also refers to extremely low tides.

Last month, water from the king tides went over Orange County seawalls and onto Pacific Coast Highway. Damage to homes and property were reported from Sunset Beach to Newport Beach.

Orange County crews have been working since Wednesday to prepare for the upcoming king tide event and potential influx of rain water from Thursday’s storm.

“Crews . . . went ahead and filled up bladders to block any of the storm drain water from coming up from the catch basins and into the roadways,” Jeff Lopez of the Huntington Beach Fire Department.

As part of the 4th annual California King Tides Photo Initiative, Los Angeles Waterkeeper is asking citizens to document the 2013 king tides by taking photographs during high tide anywhere along the coast, particularly in areas subject to flooding or erosion, uploading them to, and tagging @LAWaterkeeper.

The photos will be used to help visualize the effects of future sea level rise.

The first king tide event of 2013 is expected to last through Friday, according to LA Waterkeeper.

The National Weather Service has issued a coastal flood advisory until 11 a.m. Saturday.

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