3.4 A Surge of New Products: Assessing Storm Surge Maps and Warnings for Tropical and Extra-Tropical Inundation

Thursday, 11 June 2015: 11:15 AM
303 (Raleigh Convention Center)
Betty Hearn Morrow, SocResearch, Miami, FL; and D. G. M. Eosco, L. Girardi, S. Shrestha, and J. W. Cannon

The Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map is a new, experimental National Weather Service (NWS) product. It was developed with extensive social science research and was issued by the National Hurricane Center for the first time during Tropical Storm/Hurricane Arthur in July 2014. Evidence from several sources, including interviews with broadcast meteorologists and emergency managers involved in the Arthur response, will be used to summarize how the map was used and its perceived efficacy. Suggestions provided by various stakeholder groups for possible improvements will be reported prior to the solicitation of input from conference participants.

Building on the tropical community's storm surge efforts, the National Weather Service in partnership with Eastern Research Group is evaluating whether the extra-tropical community would also benefit from a storm surge inundation map, as well as a storm surge watch and warning. Of immediate concern is whether a new storm surge watch and warning would replace the current coastal flood advisory, watch, warning program, or add to the suite of coastal hazard products. In-depth interviews were conducted with 10 NWS forecast offices, as well as a broadcaster and emergency manager representative from each forecast office area for a total of 30 interviewees. Findings will be reported, but broader input from the broadcast and communication of warnings community is paramount to guide this initiative.

A panel and audience discussion will follow.

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