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UPDATE: New High Wind Warning for Oregon Coast, More Beach Hazards

Published 01/19/2018 at 5:35 PM PDT - Updated 01/21/2018 at 12:35 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

High Wind Watch for Oregon Coast Saturday, More Beach Hazards

(Oregon Coast) – The storms and dangers are not over yet on the Oregon coast. The latest: the National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has issued a new high wind warning for Saturday evening through Sunday afternoon, with gusts up to 65 mph possible. Sneaker waves and heavy seas will remain a problem throughout the weekend, with wave height sticking around 20 feet or higher at times. (Photo above courtesy Cannon Beach Surf Shop: more than 100-foot-wave towers over Tillamook Rock Lighthouse on Thursday).

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The high wind warning is from around midnight Saturday to 1 p.m. Sunday afternoon. Meanwhile, Oregon Coast Beach Connection is advising everyone to stay off all beaches throughout the weekend, even though most tourism organizations are not officially declaring this warning.

The NWS said the high wind watch means south winds 30 to 40 mph will accompany gusts up to 65 mph on beaches and headlands. The strongest winds will happen Sunday, the NWS said, and the impact may well be power outages.

“Strong winds may blow down trees, branches, and power lines,” the NWS said. “Isolated power outages are possible. A High Wind Watch means hazardous high wind conditions are favorable in and close to the watch area in the next 12 to 48 hours.”

On Saturday night, combined seas rise to 20 feet with a dominant period of 12 seconds, bringing the likelihood of some big sneaker waves on the beaches.

The pattern continues with combined seas 23 to 25 feet on Sunday morning through the day, easing slightly at night. More large waves on the beaches and toppling jetties is in store, with low-lying parking lots still posing some risk once again.

Monday, seas drop to 17 feet, while Tuesday sees a further drop to 12 but rising again on Wednesday to 16 feet.

Thus, Oregon Coast Beach Connection is still advising people stay off the beaches – all beaches – until at least Tuesday, with extreme caution in mind on Wednesday.

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Plenty of interesting things should turn up on the beaches after this set of waves, but it won't be a good time to look for them until wave height subsides to below 15 feet on a regular basis. Even then, smaller beaches like parts of Lincoln City, Gleneden Beach or Oceanside should be avoided.

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Offshore waters are under a storm watch, likely turning to a storm warning, with heavy winds and choppy seas making for extremely dangerous conditions for seafaring vessels.

The rest of the week's forecast for the coastline is for very rainy conditions, with highs and lows in the 40s. See Full Oregon Coast Weather.

Also see: Video: Damage, Injuries on Oregon Coast Extensive; One Death 

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