NOAA and FEMA's National Severe Weather Preparedness Week
Coastal Processes & Hazards - News
Stony Brook, NY, April 23, 2012 - In addition to being "Earth Day," yesterday also kicked off "National Severe Weather Preparedness Week," (NSWP).

"It’s clear from the wild weather we’ve seen lately that we’re entering the heart of severe weather season. Being prepared for severe weather is critical to saving lives and livelihoods and ultimately building a Weather-Ready Nation," says National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Dr. Jane Lubchenco,

"As a member of the public, you play a vital role in the way the country prepares for and responds to disasters," says Lubchenco. Natural disasters such as severe weather, floods, tropical cyclones, extreme temperature, earthquakes, wildfires and tornadoes affect millions of people every year.

The NSWP Week initiative – a joint effort between NOAA and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), along with a host of federal, state and local partners – is calling on you to “Be a Force of Nature” in your community to help people be prepared should a severe weather event strike. Last year, more than 1,000 deaths and more than 8,000 injuries were caused by tornadoes, floods, wildfires and other types of severe weather.

“As Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee showed us last year, severe weather is a real concern for every New Yorker. Everyone must know the risks they face and prepare to meet them before disaster strikes,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Philip E. Parr.

"We’re asking you to take action: Know your risk, pledge to prepare, build an emergency kit, create an emergency plan for you and your family – and then tell your social network all about it using your favorite social media tools, like Facebook, Twitter (use tag #ImAForce) and YouTube."

The first step to becoming weather-ready is to understand the type of hazardous weather that can affect where you live and work, and how the weather could impact you and your family. Check the weather forecast regularly, obtain a NOAA Weather Radio, and sign up for localized alerts from emergency management officials. Severe weather comes in many forms and your shelter plan should include all types of local hazards.

For more on the risks in your area and ways you can participate, prepare and protect yourself, your family and your community, visit www.ready.gov/severe-weather and www.noaa.gov/WRN.

You can also subscribe to receive alerts via FEMA during disasters in your state.


New York Sea Grant's Related News and Initiatives

Storm Surge Research

Distinguished Service Professor and SoMAS researcher Dr. Malcolm Bowman is a member of the Stony Brook Storm Surge Research Group which has been funded principally by NYSG since 2002 to work on storm surge science and policy issues related to regional protection of New York City and Long Island.

The New York Metropolitan region is vulnerable to coastal flooding and large-scale damage from hurricanes and nor'easters. Much of the region lies less than three meters above mean sea level and contains critical infrastructure such as hospitals, airports, railroad and subway station entrances, highways and water treatment plants.

In the Group's most recently-funded two-year study, which began earlier this year, Bowman and his investigators are examining the combining of storm surge prediction models from the National Weather Service, universities and technical institutes. "Since each storm has its own peculiar characteristics and behavior," said Dr. Bowman, "no one model is always the most accurate at predicting surge events.” The team believes that a forecast obtained by constructing an ensemble of models will produce the most reliable predictor of storm event scenarios.

NYSG dives into Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance's City of Water Days; Provides educational materials on rip currents, severe storms, and more (July 2012)

NYSG-Funded Researcher on Concern Over Risk of Storm Surges in New York City (January 2012)

Fighting Back the Waves in NYC (May 2011)

SBU Researcher Talks on WNYC Radio About Sea Level Rise in NYC (February 2011)

The Quiet Before the Storm? (Coastlines, Spring 2010)

New Web Site Helps Managers Deal with Nor’easters (Coastlines, Spring 2010)

New Weather Web Site Goes Back to Predict the Future (November 2009)

Rising Seas in a Warming World (January 2009)

Breaking the Waves (Coastlines, Fall 2008)

Researchers Find Ways to Improve Storm Surge Forecasts (July 2008)

Closing the Doors on Storm Surges (Coastlines, Spring 2005) (pdf)


Additional Resources

Publication Spotlight: Long Island’s Dynamic South Shore

NOAA Sea Grant and Climate Change: Helping the Nation Prepare

NOAAWatch - NOAA's All Hazard Monitoring Web Site

NOAA's Storm Surge and Coastal Inundation Web siteCoastal flooding is by far the leading killer during a hurricane

Hurricane Education
Hurricanes are severe tropical storms that form in the southern Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico and in the eastern Pacific Ocean.  People who live in hurricane prone communities should know their vulnerability, and what actions should be taken to reduce the effects of these devastating storms. The key point is simple: plan accordingly and plan ahead.

New York Times Blogs on NYSG-Funded SBU Researchers Tracking Hurricane Irene (August 2011)

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