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Blame The Moon For South Florida’s Tidal Flooding

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(Source: CBS4)

(Source: CBS4)

maggieheadshot Maggie Newland
Maggie Newland is a reporter at CBS4. She arrived at the station ...
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MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – Parts of South Beach are drying out from flood waters, which weren’t caused by any rain, but caused by an astronomical high tide.  In other words, blame it on the moon.

“I have no idea because it’s not raining so I don’t know why now it’s flooding,” said one woman on Miami Beach who is confused about why it’s flooding without any rain.

Each year, sometimes up to twice a year, the sun, earth and moon line up just right to create higher than normal tides. And it’s happening again right now causing exceptionally high tides along South Florida’s coastal areas.

On Miami Beach, Alton Road and 10th Street and Alton and 5th Street have been underwater during high tide. Storm and bay water pushes up through the infrastructure and overflows onto the streets.

It makes getting in and off Miami Beach and getting around quite a hassle and it also slows down business.

Elizabeth Potter, owner of Pistils & Petals Flower Shop on Alton and 10th has already endured a slowdown because of road construction.  The tidal flooding just adds insult to injury.   Potter said, “We’ve had a really tough time with the summer construction on Alton Road and then to arrive to work the last few days and encounter this flooding it’s very hard on us.”

“A lot of people will go somewhere else. Usually they’ll walk here and take a cab and go downtown or Brickell or whatever,” said cab driver Jose Quirantes.

The good news is that the flooding is temporary but takes place twice a day, during high tide.

During these peak tide times, low roads are likely to flood such as West Avenue, Alton Road and Purdy Avenue on Miami Beach.

“We went to Miami and it was clear and now we’re coming back and it’s flooded,” said Ana Jamed who was surprised by the quickly rising waters.

While visitors were shocked, most Miami Beach residents said they’re fairly used to this.  “This happened last year around the same time,” said Elizabeth Fernandez. Most who live on the beach are taking it in stride. “It looks like that’s what we’re going to have to do tonight, slip off the sandals, roll up the pants,” said Will Geisler.

Periods of flooding are expected to continue through the weekend.

It’s also important to remember that the flood water is coming from rising sea water which is salt water.  Lonnie Somach at Alton Bay Car Wash points out it’s important you wash your car daily during these tidal floods.  “It can destroy the engine, it can destroy the paint.  And you have to do the undercarriage because it rusts on the bottom of the car.”

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