Hurricane Preparedness Day 2

Written by on May 14, 2018 in Tropics

From the NWS:

Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Newport/Morehead City NC
613 AM EDT Mon May 14 2018


All week long the National Weather Service will issue informative
messages to help you prepare for the hurricane season. Today’s
topics include storm surge and developing an evacuation plan.

Storm Surge…
One of the greatest potentials for loss of life related to a
hurricane is from the storm surge. Storm surge is simply water
that is pushed toward the shore by the force of the winds swirling
around the storm. This advancing surge combines with the normal tides
to create the hurricane storm tide, which can increase the mean water
level to heights impacting roads, homes and other critical
infrastructure. In addition, wind driven waves are superimposed on
the storm tide. This rise in water level can cause severe flooding in
coastal areas, particularly when the storm tide coincides with the
normal high tides. Because much of the United States’ densely
populated Atlantic and Gulf Coast coastlines lie less than 10 feet
above mean sea level, the danger from storm tides is tremendous.

The storm surge combined with wave action can cause extensive damage,
severely erode beaches and coastal highways. With major storms like
Katrina, Camille and Hugo, complete devastation of coastal
communities occurred. Many buildings withstand hurricane force winds
until their foundations, undermined by erosion, are weakened and
fail. Storm surge can travel several miles inland and can also span
hundreds of miles of coastline.

It is important to keep in mind that storm surge is not a factor in
the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. Know that even a tropical storm
or Category 1 hurricane can have a devastating storm surge if the
proper conditions exist. In other words, don’t assume that a
tropical storm or a hurricane on the low end of the Saffir-Simpson
Scale will not have a large or significant storm surge. Be sure to
stay informed and pay close attention to storm surge forecast details
regardless of the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale rating.

Develop an Evacuation Plan…
The first thing you need to do is find out if you live in a storm
surge hurricane evacuation zone or if you’re in a home that would be
unsafe during a hurricane. If you are, figure out where you’d go and
how you’d get there if told to evacuate. You do not need to travel
hundreds of miles. Identify someone, perhaps a friend or relative
who doesn’t live in a zone or unsafe home, and work it out with them
to use their home as your evacuation destination. If you don’t live
in an evacuation zone, identify someone who does, and plan to be
their inland evacuation destination. Be sure to account for your
pets, as most local shelters do not permit them. Finally, be sure
to put the plan in writing for you and those you care about.

For more information about hurricane preparedness, please visit the
following web sites:

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