King tides could spell Christmas disaster for campers
KING tides have authorities on high alert on the Sunshine Coast, with one beach in particular looking to avoid a repeat of its Easter nightmare.
Earlier this year, Teewah Beach at Double Island Point was "swallowed" up by a monster high tide that left campers stranded.
At the time, a Surf Life Saving Queensland spokesperson said there was chaos on the beach as campers in four-wheel-drives scrambled up on to the sand dunes to avoid getting swept away.
Authorities are concerned similar king tide conditions could see a repeat at the popular beach.
This weekend has seen a warning go out, reporting the big tides will likely make Teewah Beach north of Noosa impassable at times during the Christmas-New Year break.
Drivers are being reminded the dunes are not an alternative route.
High tide on Boxing Day at 10.50am will coincide with major travel times on Teewah Beach.
Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service Ranger Erin Atkinson is reminding visitors to travel two or three hours either side of low tide, and to look after their vehicle and the environment.
"Sleep in a bit longer and come a few hours later, as sections of beach are likely to be impassable at high tide," Ms Atkinson told Noosa News.
"Driving on the dunes is not permitted, and rangers can issue $261 on-the-spot fines.
"Rangers will be using online park alerts, phone messages and signage to alert drivers.
"Extra rangers will be on hand, as well as electronic signage at key points such as near the Tewantin ferry.
"QPWS will send SMS alerts about the high tides to visitors who have booked vehicle permits or camping permits over the high-risk period."
Sunshine Coast roving lifeguard Trent Robinson said the king tide would hit the Coast on Sunday.
"It's been a high tide all of December but it will be really large, the highest on Sunday," Mr Robinson said.
"Everything will look nice and calm, but swimmers need to be careful, particularly on the out-going tide.
"There is a northerly wind which will make for messy and unstable conditions."