The tide is high, the king tide late January

Owners of boats and properties with coastal or river frontages in South East Queensland should prepare for the first of the state’s summer king tides predicted later this month.

Acting Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Ryan said the higher-than-usual tides were already occurring along the South East coast and would reach maximum levels in coming weeks.

“With an increase in holiday boating, some less experienced boat owners may be caught out by the wider tidal margins, especially when launching and retrieving,” Mr Ryan said.

“The first of the year’s highest tides are expected from the Gold Coast up to Noosa and Fraser Island from 22 January.

“Maritime Safety Queensland is warning people living close to the water may also be affected and should move tinnies, kayaks, garden furniture and other items away from the water’s edge.

“Keep a close watch over children playing in shallow water – tidal streams in these waters can be strong.”

Mr Ryan said the highest tides this month could be about 20 centimetres higher than a typical spring tide.

“King tides are caused by the gravitational influence of the sun and moon.

“However it is important to remember severe weather such as storms or cyclones can cause sea levels to be elevated above the expected height.

“People who live near the water need to stay abreast of weather conditions and storm surges.

“Boaties should remember at this time of year tides are typically at their highest and lowest extremes.”

More northern ports will experience their highest predicted tides of the year from the period 22 January to 20 February depending on the location.

For tide information, go to


  • The king tides are the highest predicted tides that occur at any place.
  • They occur naturally and regularly, are predicted in tide books and are not a daily event.
  • In a lunar month the highest tides occur at the time of the new moon and full moon.
  • These are called spring tides and they occur about every 14 days.
  • In any year there will be two spring tides that are the highest, one during summer and one during winter. These are referred to as king tides.
  • These occur around the new year but can be equally high in the winter.
  • The winter king tides are at night and not as obvious as those in the new year which generally occur during the day.
  • Similar high tides are expected in coming weeks for more northerly coastlines.

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