"New Hurricane Forecast Maps To Show Flood Risk From Storm Surge"

"When the Atlantic hurricane season opens June 1, national forecasters will roll out a new feature: color-coded and broadcast-ready maps to graphically show the potential for flooding from storm surges.

'We are not a storm surge savvy nation. Yet storm surge is responsible for over half the deaths in hurricanes. So you can see why we're motivated to try something new,' said Jamie Rhome, storm surge specialist for the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

The maps are the result of years of experience and recent polling that found most Americans living on vulnerable coastlines paid too much attention to hurricane wind strength and not enough to storm surge before deciding whether to evacuate ahead of a storm, Rhome said during an interview at this week's National Hurricane Conference in Orlando."

Barbara Liston reports for Reuters April 16, 2014.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014