People walk along Santa Monica Beach. (File photo)

The National Weather Service has issued a high surf warning for Southern California coastal areas through the weekend.

The advisory calls for an extended period of high surf conditions into early next week with potential damaging surf and moderate coastal flooding by Monday.

A long period west swell has spread through Ventura and Los Angeles counties with an even larger west swell likely to impact west facing beaches from Sunday night through Tuesday.

“During this time … there will be the potential for damaging surf and significant beach erosion which may require an upgrade to a high surf warning,” the advisory reads. “The combination of very large surf and projected high tides in excess of 6 feet will also bring the risk of moderate coastal flooding near times of high tide Monday into Tuesday.”

Local beaches could see surf of 6 to 10 feet with max sets up to 13 feet across west facing beaches through Sunday night. Monday through Tuesday potentially larger waves of up to 15 feet with max sets of 17 feet are possible.

Surf of 10 to 15 feet with max sets up to 18 feet can be expected in other parts of the region. The Weather Service said even larger surf of up to 20 feet with max sets of 22 feet would be possible.

Officials said there is an increased risk for drowning due to large surf and strong rip currents.

“Sneaker waves can suddenly wash people off of beaches and rock jetties,” the advisory reads. “The extended period of high surf will also bring the risk of significant beach erosion. During the peak of this surf event from Sunday night through Tuesday morning … there will also be a threat of damage to coastal structures such as piers.”

Moderate coastal flooding into beach parking lots, beach campgrounds and roadways is possible.

The highest surf is expected on West and Northwest facing beaches. If caught in a rip current, swim parallel to shore until free and swimmers are encouraged to always swim near a lifeguard station.

editor@www.smdp.com