Wave runup during Tropical Storm Colin at Madeira Beach, Florida
This short video demonstrates wave runup and setup on a beach on a stormy day during Tropical Storm Colin. The camera, positioned in the surf zone, shows a multistory building in the background, while waves run up the shallow beach and wash sand from the eroded dune edge (scarp). The vegetation that normally protects the dune has dangling roots where the sand has been washed away.
Storm surge and waves can erode these protective dunes. Breaking waves contribute to the total water level at the beach through the processes of wave runup and setup. Runup occurs when a wave breaks and water is propelled up the beach. Wave setup occurs when the water from the breaking waves piles up along the beach because it can’t get out to sea. This video segment shows the effects of runup during Tropical Storm Colin at Sunset Beach, Florida.