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Major flooding, erosion expected as nor’easter bears down on Jersey Shore

Oct. 3, 2022 Updated Mon., Oct. 3, 2022 at 6:20 p.m.

Surf pounds Boardwalk at Maine Avenue in Atlantic City during a nor’easter Monday at noon.  (Amy Rosenberg/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS)
Surf pounds Boardwalk at Maine Avenue in Atlantic City during a nor’easter Monday at noon. (Amy Rosenberg/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS)
By Frank Kummer The Philadelphia Inquirer

PHILADELPHIA – A nor’easter that’s been grinding down on the Jersey Shore on the heels of the remnants of Hurricane Ian could cause major flooding as high tides peak Monday afternoon, say forecasters, who have issued a warning.

The National Weather Service’s coastal flood warning is in effect through 9 p.m. local time Tuesday, along with a high surf advisory, with “one to two feet of inundation” expected in low-lying areas near the Shore, back bays and tidal waterways. The storm is causing dangerous rip currents from Atlantic City to Cape May.

As a result, widespread road flooding is expected with risky conditions for surfers, and impacts are expected to last longest in the back bays.

But the rain also brings a positive: A dent in the drought or dryness that’s impacted much of South Jersey and the Philadelphia region.

“We’re in the thick of it right now,” said Cameron Wunderlin, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service. “And it’s going to continue through Wednesday. Most of the coast is what we’re concerned about.”

Wunderlin does not expect major flooding in the immediate Philadelphia area, although flooding of low-lying areas, or those with poor drainage, is possible.

Flooding is already being reported in areas such as Ocean City, Cape May County and Long Beach Island, Ocean County.

In Ocean City, students are being dismissed early. City officials are warning residents that they can expect 25 to 30 mph winds with gusts up to 45 mph. High tide crests of 6.7 feet are expected at 3:04 p.m. Monday, 6.9 feet at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday and 6.3 feet at 5:25 p.m. Wednesday on the bay side at Ninth Street Bridge.

“Residents should be prepared to move vehicles to safe places well in advance of these high tides,” officials said, noting that all municipal parking lots will be free, as well as at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Marmora.

As the Shore copes, Philly will see a steady soaking but likely dodge major impacts.

“For Philadelphia, it’s more of a lower impact event,” Wunderlin said.

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