Marshalls braced for more king tides
More king tides expected in Marshall Islands this weekend.
GIFF JOHNSON: Normally the Marshall Islands gets the highest tides each year at the end of January and the end of February. That's our moon phase that always brings high tides. And the tide that we saw earlier this week, was like that. I mean we've got this weekend and then next weekend and then another couple of days in February that are already on people's radar as possible flooding times. And over the years we have had regular flooding this time of the year in different parts, not just Majuro, but some of the remote other islands. It usually seems to depend on what kind of weather conditions there are surrounding the high tides. So if we have a storm somewhere that has kicked up wave swells, that often is enough to create flooding or if there's if there are high winds things like that. So usually the hightide itself doesn't always cause flooding, but when it's in conjunction with other weather events then we tend to see flooding and it just depends how bad it is on the weather conditions and the height of the tide.
KOROI HAWKINS: You say flooding and that's usually associated with rivers and fresh water, you mean the sea is actually inundating homes and streets?
GJ: The ocean water simply washes right over the shore, rolls right across the island and in bad inundation incidences, we'll see it just, you know it will just be, could be as much as half a metre of water washing across the road, into people's houses. It isn't like a tsunami or waves crashing, you know, big high waves hitting the island because the reef breaks up the waves. But it's just this inexorable tide and it's just, for a couple of hours, you know as it's coming up to the peak high tide and as it's going back down it just keeps rolling in.
KH: And you say you have a couple more weeks of this. Is it expected to get worse and are people sort of bracing or preparing for that?
GJ: There's really no way to tell, what the, essentially, there now are I think just three more days there's an alert about Saturday, tomorrow and then there are two days in February toward the end of February which have been identified in this, the weather folks now do an inundation forecast. And they look at the tides and so on. So there is sometimes they put an alert out and we see almost, very little and other times it's serious. So it's very hard to know, but I think people now, since these events have become semi-regular I mean we are having several a year now, so you know people are more aware of this occurence.
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