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‘Extremely Dangerous’ 16-Foot Waves Possible At Chicago Beaches Wednesday

Chicagoans are being warned to stay away from Lake Michigan as the lakefront is battered by huge waves.

Large waves over Lake Michigan crash at Montrose Beach on March 18, 2021.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — People are being warned to stay away from the lakefront Wednesday as dangerous waves up to 16 feet tall and flooding are expected.

There will be “large and battering waves” that could be 12-16 feet tall at Chicago’s beaches Wednesday afternoon through Thursday morning, according to a National Weather Service beach hazards statement.

“These large waves combined with above-average lake levels will result in beach erosion, extremely dangerous conditions at the lakefront, as well as minor lakeshore flooding,” according to the weather agency.

Portions of Chicago’s lakefront are expected to become “inundated and impassible,” and swimming will be life-threatening, the agency warned.

People should keep out of the water and not venture onto piers, jetties, breakwalls or other structures along the shore.

The Park District is already technically not permitting swimming since the beach season has ended.

The day is expected to see scattered rain showers and be windy, with gusts up to 45 mph possible throughout Chicago.

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