Want to help track King Tides?


By Mindy Lucas

Interested in learning more about King Tides? Want to help S.C. officials track these seasonal events? Now you can.

Led by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), the South Carolina King Tides initiative strives to document the effects that extreme tide events have on our beaches, coastal waterways, private property and public infrastructure.

In fact, the first King Tide of 2021 is predicted to occur between April 26-29.

Those interested in learning how DHEC’s online reporting tool works so they can help track and document the tides, can watch a live online presentation coming up at 3 p.m. this Thursday, April 22.

Since its launch in 2014, the King Tides reporting tool has been used by more than 1,500 members to generate more than 2,000 reports in South Carolina.

The term “King Tide” is a non-scientific term used to describe the highest seasonal tides that occur each year. For example, in Charleston, the average high tide range is about 5.5 feet, whereas a King Tide event may see a high tide reach 7 feet or higher, according to DHEC’s website.

King Tides occur naturally during a new or full moon and when the moon is closest to Earth during its 28-day elliptical orbit. This is also known as perigee.

The effects of these exceptionally high tides can vary. In some cases, they may be barely noticed, while in other cases they can cause erosion, flooding and damage to property. This is particularly true when a King Tide event coincides with a significant rain event.

To learn more about the initiative visit www.mycoast.org/sc. To register for the free webinar, go to https://bit.ly/3xd2Eai and enter your name and email information.

Mindy Lucas is the Beaufort reporter for The Island News and is a staff writer for Lowcountry Weekly. She can be reached at mindy.islandnews@gmail.com.

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