Streets have begun flooding in downtown Charleston following the appearance of last night’s historic “supermoon”. The seasonal King Tide, which frequents Charleston annually, was exacerbated by the moon’s gravity as it orbited closer to the earth than it had since 1948.
Many lower parts of Charleston have been issued a coastal flood advisory, warning citizens to refrain from driving until the increased water levels subside. The highest tide came around 7 a.m. this morning. Officials have set the flood advisory to end at 10 a.m.
Despite the advisory, many locals have attempted to drive through the high waters. There are several videos and pictures people have shared online of vehicles stranded in the knee-deep waters. No severe emergencies have erupted out of the flooding, but it has certainly made transportation much more difficult.
The “supermoon” is a name given to the phenomena when the moon will be closest in orbit to the earth while being full. This gives viewers the illusion that the moon is significantly larger than it actually is. The position of the moon hasn’t been like this since January of 1948, offering people a chance to see something very rare.
Tides experienced on earth are controlled by the moon’s gravity. Therefore, the closer in orbit the moon gets to the earth, the greater the gravitational pull. This results in higher tides and the increased risk of flooding as is being experienced in Downtown Charleston.