A high risk for rip currents at Long Island’s ocean beaches has been extended and now is in effect through 8 p.m. Wednesday, with surf height ranging from 3 to 7 feet, according to the National Weather Service’s Upton office.

That’s as Hurricane Gaston, churning well out to sea, has been sending swells, causing water to pile up along the mid-Atlantic coast, said Nelson Vaz, weather service meteorologist in Upton. That water gets “trapped on the landward side of sandbars,” and has “to find a way out” through cuts in the sand, creating strong rip currents in the process.

“Hurricane Gaston, well east of Bermuda, will move northeast through Thursday, continuing a high risk of rip currents and high surf across Atlantic Ocean-facing shores,” said Gary Conte, also a meteorologist in Upton.

Beachgoers are strongly advised to stay close to lifeguards and follow their directions.

Rich Hoffman, News 12 Long Island meteorologist, also urged swimmers to be careful at South Shore beaches.

Tuesday night skies turn partly cloudy and winds shift southwest at 5 to 10 mph. Overnight lows are in the upper 60s, Hoffman said.

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Wednesday conditions are a bit more humid and daily highs push to the mid-80s under a mix of sun and clouds, he said.

With Gary Dymski