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Ashleigh Madden, 17 Jun 2024, 2:14 AM UTC

Mountainous surf lashes coast

Mountainous surf lashes coast

Massive waves reaching nearly six metres impacted the NSW coast on Sunday, with damaging waves continuing to impact the central coastline on Monday. 

A Tasman Low is behind the mammoth southeasterly swell along the eastern seaboard and it’s not going anywhere fast, with the large waves set to continue until mid-week. 

The satellite images below show cloud swirling in a clockwise direction around the Tasman Low just to the northwest of New Zealand. You can also see the clouds moving up the east coast of Australia, which is driven by fierce southerly winds.  

The persistent gale force southerly winds associated with the low continue to whip up large swell along the NSW coast, including Bondi.   

  The graph below shows that Sydney’s wave height peaked at 5.2 metres at 2am on Monday, June 17. 

Image: Significant wave height. Source: Manly Hydraulics Laboratory. 

Not only are these waves large, but they are powerful, with the wave period reaching just under 15 seconds on Sunday in Sydney. This means each individual wave carries a substantial amount of energy behind it. 

Further south Port Kembla recorded waves of 5.6 metres, while Eden’s peaked at 5.8 metres.  

You can see that the waves have reduced slightly on Monday morning, with heights lingering at around 4 metres off Sydney. 

Waves of 4 to 6 metres are set to continue Monday along the central NSW coastline, with the potential to cause localised damage and coastal erosion, especially along the south-facing beaches.  

While the damaging surf should ease later Monday, large waves will continue to impact the NSW coast until Wednesday.  

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