Hurricane Irene Aftermath
September 7, 2011 Facebook TwitterMore...

Katia forecast to pass offshore, but heavy surf expected


The National Hurricane Center forecast is for Hurricane Katia to pass well offshore of the Outer Banks on Thursday, bringing heavy surf to Hatteras and Ocracoke.

The National Weather Service in Newport, N.C., has issued a heavy surf advisory for the Outer Banks from Duck to Ocracoke, as the southeast swell from Katia begins to affect the area.

The advisory is effect from 6 a.m. this morning until 6 a.m. Friday morning. 

The prediction is for 11-foot breakers today north of Cape Lookout, building to a peak of 10 to 14 feet on Thursday and subsiding on Friday.

The big waves are a concern, especially at New New Inlet on Pea Island, which is the largest inlet caused by Hurricane Irene.

Susan Flythe, general manager of Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative, said that the heavy seas could be a problem for the newly repaired power lines, which are now bringing in power down the island on 115kV transmission lines from the north.

Flythe said the cooperative is also concerned that the south side of New New Inlet is eroding at a rate of 5 to 6 feet a day.  It will eventually be stabilized with more sand – before more damage is done.

There is also a high threat of rip currents along the Outer Banks as the storm passes by.

In addition, Tropical Depression 14 formed today in the Atlantic.  There is a good chance it will become Tropical Storm Maria today, but so far is predicted to take a path similar to Katia, staying offshore.

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