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New early flood-warning system developed to protect drivers

Stream gauge over the Neuse River on N.C. 42 in Johnston County
Stream gauge over the Neuse River on N.C. 42 in Johnston County(NCDOT)
Published: May. 23, 2022 at 10:35 AM EDT
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RALEIGH, N.C. (WITN) - North Carolina Department of Transportation has created a new early flood-warning system for roads.

The new system will allow the NCDOT for the first time to analyze, map, and communicate in real-time any flood risks to roads, bridges, and culverts. The advanced system relies on a network of 400 river and stream gauges.

This critical information will go to DOT maintenance staff responding to flooded roads and washed-out culverts, and it will benefit local emergency management officials and the public accessing the department’s DriveNC.gov website for timely weather-related closures.

“This state-of-the-art warning system our department has created will help us be better prepared for the next major storm,” Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette said. “Even though we’ve had some quiet hurricane seasons recently, we cannot let our guard down.”

The last major storm to impact the state’s road network was Hurricane Florence in 2018. Researchers at N.C. State University and the National Hurricane Center are predicting an above-average hurricane season, which officially starts June 1.

Learn the components of a gauge here.

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