HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) — Even though Hurricane Lee is about 1,000 miles away from Hampton Roads Monday evening, waves from the powerful storm are showing face at local shorelines. Given current guidance, the major hurricane will continue to kick up the surf and send large waves to the entire East Coast of the U.S. as the week goes on.
The long period swell arrived to local beaches Monday morning, and is expected to steadily grow in size as the week goes on, peaking between Wednesday and Friday. As a result, the risk of dangerous rip currents will also go up throughout the week.
The risk of rip currents will be especially high from Tuesday afternoon through Friday, with the risk lingering all the way through Saturday and Sunday. A rip current is a channel of water that flows away from the coastline, often due to a break in the sandbar and the momentum of water moving with the waves.
Rip currents rank as one of the most common weather related fatalities in the United States year after year. So far in 2023, there have been 76 fatalities due to rip currents and large surf according to the National Weather Service.
Use extra caution at our local beaches this week and weekend and be sure to check in with the lifeguards.