These Washington Areas May See More Severe Flooding

Flooded SUV

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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) revealed which areas of the United States will see high flooding next year, including Washington state.

The agency released its annual "State of High Tide Flooding and 2022 Outlook report," which found that high tide flooding (HTF), also known as king tides, is becoming more frequent in the country due to rising sea levels.

They're defined as "the overflow or excess accumulation of ocean water at high tide that covers low-lying areas, and typically occurs when tides reach anywhere from 1.75 to 2 feet above the daily average high tide and start spilling onto streets or bubbling up from storm drains," according to NOAA's website.

These dangerous floods used to happen only during a storm. Now they're happening more regularly during the full moon or changes in currents and winds, as researchers explain. The Eastern U.S. and Gulf state communities will see a 150% bump in HTF compared to 2000, the study says.

What does this mean for the Evergreen State? NOAA's high flooding map predicts potential flooding incidents, as well as past ones:

  • Seattle: Seven days of flooding in 2021, one to five days of flooding in 2022, nine to 10 days in 2050
  • Cherry Point: Two flooding days in 2021, up to five days in 2022, five to six days in 2050
  • Friday Harbor: Eight flooding days in 2021, up to six days in 2022, eight to 10 days in 2050
  • Port Townsend: Six days of flooding in 2021, up to four days in 2022, nine to 10 days in 2050
  • Port Angeles: Three days of flooding in 2021, up to five days in 2022, seven to nine days in 2050
  • Toke Point: 11 flooding days in 2021, four to 16 days in 2022, 20 to 25 days in 2050

You can view the full report on NOAA's website.