Virginia Beach Faces Tidal Flooding Threat From Hurricane Sandy; Worst Rain and Winds Expected Late Sunday

Sandy #003

Friday, October 26, 2012


Mary G. Hancock, 385-4436, 404-7920 (cell)
Tim Riley, 385-1075, 377-0134 (cell)


As Hurricane Sandy approaches, the biggest potential threat facing Virginia Beach is expected to be tidal flooding.


Sandy will transition from a hurricane to take on many of the traits and impacts of the 2009 Nor’easter.  Although Virginia Beach will not receive hurricane force winds, we will be battered with significant winds from Saturday evening through Monday.  These winds will reach tropical force levels (39 to 74 mph). The most severe window will be Sunday late afternoon through midnight.


As in the 2009, Virginia Beach will undergo significant tidal stacking within the Lynnhaven Basin. We expect continuous northerly winds to not allow low tide cycles to empty the basin as they normally do.  We predict as many as six high-low tide cycles to be held captive within the Lynnhaven Basin. 

Low-lying areas prone to tidal inundation and rainfall accumulation are at great risk of flooding.


Wave action and tidal surge could reach 10 feet along the Atlantic Ocean and will approach 6 feet in the Chesapeake Bay.  Significant beach erosion is expected as significant waves hit the coast from Saturday morning through Tuesday.


Occasional rain will start as early as Saturday morning and be with us through Tuesday.  Heaviest rain is expected Saturday evening through Sunday evening. Some areas may receive up to 6 inches of rain.


For up-to-date storm information, follow us on Facebook and Twitter (#VBSandy), or call VB311 Citizen Services by dialing 311 on landlines within the city limits, (757) 385-3111 by cell phone, or visit for online assistance.


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