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'Dangerous' surf prompts warning

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 10:00 a.m. HST, Nov 12, 2013

National Weather Service forecasters are warning of dangerous high surf on the north andeast shores of most Hawaiian islands starting tonight through Wednesday.

The warning takes effect at 6 p.m. tonight for Oahu, Kauai County, Maui, Molokai and the Big Island.

Forecasters say waves building to 20- to 30-feet along north facing shores and 15- to 20-feet along east shores are expected to arrive Tuesday night and peak on Wednesday.

"These dangerous conditions mean that only highly experienced persons should enter the water. Inexperienced persons should remain off beaches and adjacent beachfront areas. Large breaking surf, significant shorebreak and dangerous currents make entering the water very hazardous. Anyone entering the water could face significant injury or death," forecasters said in a warning message.

"Expect ocean water surging and sweeping across beaches, coastal benches and lava flows," forecasters said in a warning message. "There is potential for impacts to coastal properties and infrastructure, including roadways, especially on Kamehameha Highway in Windward Oahu, and along Bayfront Highway in Hilo."

Hawaii County police said Hilo Bayfront Highway remains closed after advisory-level surf of 12 to 18 feet from the northeast sent debris and waves over the roadway.

"Powerful longshore and rip currents will be present at most beaches. Large breaking waves and strong currents may impact harbor entrances and channels causing hazardous boating conditions," the National Weather Service said.

Forecasters said a shorter period between waves could make for "unruly breakers" and above-normal shoreline wave run up.

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