National Weather Service: 'This is not the time to be on beaches or jetties'

Very large waves will create dangerous beach conditions on Thursday. Low-lying structures and roads could be flooded or impacted by debris. Beaches and jetties will be covered by deep water. This is NOT the time to be on beaches and jetties. Image courtesy National Weather Service Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. – Waves could impact structures on the Oregon and Washington coasts while a coastal flood warning remains in effect through Thursday.

The National Weather Service says the warning remains in effect from midnight Wednesday through midnight Thursday and it could cause significant surf and beach erosion.

Experts say a 25 to 30-foot swell train will reach the coast late Wednesday night and peak around mid-day Thursday close to high tide.

They say this event is similar to, or slightly stronger than the December 2015 event where waves ran much higher on the beaches and impacted several low-lying structures.

Forecasters predict high tide will be 8.5 to 9.5 feet between midnight and 2 a.m. Thursday and 9.5 to 10.5 feet between noon and 2 p.m. Thursday.

"We are currently in a storm warning, so we are battening down the hatches at the station," said Petty Officer Jason Steinmetz with the U.S. Coast Guard. "Then we send a notice to mariners on the radio and let them know the conditions on the Depoe Bay bar."

Breaking waves will reach 35 to 45 feet and will send water much further up the beaches and jetties than normal.

Structures and roads at beach level could be flooded or impacted by debris.

"We're worried about everyone. The beachcombers, the photographers, and the people out on the ocean," Steinmetz said.

Many beaches, jetties and rocky outcroppings will be covered by deep water.

The National Weather Service predicts these conditions will occur in Willapa Bay, Seaside, Nehalem, Tillamook and Florence.

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