Hazardous Seas Day 2 – Coastal Flooding, Boat Damage Reported

Hazardous seas and large battering waves affect Tyrico Bay, Trinidad. Photo: A Manshoor Images

Hazardous Seas, resulting from long-period swells, which originated from strong Mid-Atlantic low-pressure systems continue to affect nearly all of the Eastern Caribbean Islands, to as far south as the northeastern coasts of South America.

Though the initial peak of this hazardous seas event occurred on Monday and conditions may become slightly more settled on Wednesday, the next peak is forecast to begin late Thursday through Sunday.

Large battering waves affect Las Cuevas, causing destruction to boats.

We’ve received reports and videos of large waves from bays and beaches across Trinidad and Tobago which we’ve compiled into a playlist here.

Coastal flooding occurred at Cedros, Maracas, Tyrico Bay, Guayaguayare and along Mosquito Creek.

Coastal flooding at Cedros on Monday 28th October 2019.

A Hazardous Seas alert, Yellow level is in effect.

Sea Conditions For The Next 5 Days

The Takeaway: Based on the latest model guidance and analysis, long period swells are forecast through the end of the weekend, lasting through Sunday. Spring Tides are forecast to subside by Thursday. A Hazardous Seas Alert is now in effect until 2:00 PM Saturday.

During high tide periods, as noted below, coastal flooding is likely along Mosqutio Creek and other low-lying coastal areas. Peak swells are forecast on Sunday night through Tuesday night, and again on Thursday night into Sunday.

Peak Spring Tides occurs from Saturday 26th October to Thursday 31st October.

Large Battering Waves at Guayaguayare, overtopping the sea wall on Monday.

Approximate high tides for Trinidad and Tobago are seen below. Mosquito Creek and Guayaguayare can expect coastal flooding during these times, particularly 30 minutes prior and 30 minutes after when peak high tides occur. Similar conditions are forecast elsewhere during these high tide periods in low-lying coastal areas throughout the week.

High Tide Forecast for Trinidad over the next 7 days as the Hazardous Seas Alert goes into effect at 11 AM Sunday through 2 PM Saturday.
High Tide Forecast for Trinidad over the next 7 days as the Hazardous Seas Alert goes into effect at 11 AM Sunday through 2 PM Saturday.
High Tide Forecast for Tobago over the next 7 days as the Hazardous Seas Alert goes into effect at 11 AM Sunday through 2 PM Saturday.
High Tide Forecast for Tobago over the next 7 days as the Hazardous Seas Alert goes into effect at 11 AM Sunday through 2 PM Saturday.

On days where localized, afternoon, thunderstorms and heavy showers occur, mainly across Western Coastal Trinidad, onshore winds resulting from this activity may exacerbate coastal flooding.

Large Waves Batter Mount Irvine, Port of Spain (Oct. 28th 2019)

The general sea state throughout the week is as follows:

PM Sunday 27th Oct. – PM Tuesday 29th Oct.: Moderate to Rough, with waves generally above 1.5 meters to 2.0 meters in open waters, occasionally above to 2.5 meters, particularly across Eastern coastal waters. In sheltered areas, near 1.0 meters but choppy. Long Period Swells ongoing.

AM Wednesday 30th Oct. – PM Thursday 31st Oct.: Slight to Moderate, with waves generally between 1.5 meters to 2.0 meters in open waters, occasionally above 2.0 meters. In sheltered areas, near 1.0 meters but choppy. Long Period Swells ongoing.

PM Thursday 31st Oct. – PM Monday 4th November (beyond the expiration of the Hazardous Seas Alert): Moderate, with waves above 1.5 meters, up to 2.0 meters and occasionally up to 2.5 meters, particularly in Eastern Coastal waters on Saturday into Sunday. In sheltered areas, near 1.0 meters but choppy. Long Period Swells to subside by late Saturday.

Impacts to T&T’s Shorelines

High tides combined with onshore wind and swell actions could result in localized coastal flooding and beach erosion.

Saltwater will likely splash onto low-lying coastal roads such as the South Trunk Road at Mosquito Creek, the Guayaguayare Mayaro Road at the Guayaguayare Sea Wall, and the Manzanilla-Mayaro Road. Bays and beaches may become inundated.

Coral reefs may experience increased stress and damages, in addition to localized beach erosion, particularly in areas where battering waves focus.

There is also the potential for loss of life. There is a high risk of rip currents, strong currents that can carry even the strongest swimmers out to sea.

Large, battering waves affect Tyrico Bay, Trinidad as long-period swells affect the region. Photos: A Manshoor Images

Rip currents are powerful channels of water flowing quickly away from the shore, which occur most often at low spots or breaks in the sandbar and near structures such as groins, jetties, and piers. If caught in a rip current, relax and float. Don’t swim against the current. If able, swim in a direction following the shoreline. If unable to escape, face the shore and call or wave for help.

There is also the potential for injuries to beachgoers; beach closures; localized disruptions to marine recreation and businesses and financial losses.

High surfs can knock spectators off exposed rocks and jetties. Breaking waves may occasionally impact harbours making navigating the harbour channel dangerous. This may be exacerbated during the afternoon, localized thunderstorms and heavy showers across Western coastal Trinidad.

Boat Damage at Las Cuevas Bay

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