Researchers looking for your photos of exceptionally high “king” tides this weekend

They’ll use your photos to help coastal communities prepare for future flooding.

By: Tim Studebaker

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) – Despite quiet weather on Friday, flooding was visible around the Rhode Island coastline thanks to very high tides, informally known as “king” tides.

Dave Prescott is the South County Coastkeeper with Save the Bay.  Prescott says, “I took some photos down by Watch Hill Harbor and the Watch Hill Yacht Club, where basically the tides were basically pushing through the storm drains, coming up in the parking lot, actually flooding the area over out to Napatree Point.  This happens an awful lot.”

Exceptionally high tides happen because the moon’s orbit is not a perfect circle.  Sometimes it’s a little closer to Earth, and sometimes it’s farther away.  When it’s closer, tides become more extreme.

Prescott says, “They really give us a great picture into our future of what higher sea levels will look like around our coast.  It also shows that when we have storms, what storm surge can actually do to our communities as well.”

As king tides continue this weekend, if it’s safe to take photos, researchers want to see them.  You can submit them through an app called MyCoast.

Laura Dwyer is the Public Educator and Information Coordinator for the Coastal Resources Management Council.  Dwyer says, “This is a way to kind of ground truth our scientific data, our flooding modeling and maps.”

Your photos will help researchers determine how coastal communities can prepare for future flooding.

Dwyer says, “They can take those photos and go back to their town administrators and their planning departments and say ‘see, here’s the evidence.'”

If you’re interested in helping, visit the MyCoast website: https://mycoast.org/ri

© WLNE-TV / ABC6 2021

Categories: News, Rhode Island