FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Curts Carey
News Releases 2003
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NOAA Public Affairs
The Northeast United States is facing an above average flood risk and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service (NOAA National Weather Service) Eastern Region Headquarters, is rolling out a new high-tech web page providing critical river forecasts and water information to the public and emergency management officials. NOAA is part of the Department of Commerce.
The web design, part of the agency’s Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS), features user-friendly menus and maps, which allow viewers to zoom in and out of the areas of interest. It also uses software that provides an alert when flood watches and warnings are in effect, or if river locations are nearing flood levels.
"If you can surf the Web -- you can have instant access to a wealth of water information,” said Dean Gulezian, the Eastern Region director. Along with improved web access to river forecasts and water information, AHPS provides an expanded suite of hydrologic products to better meet the needs of the diverse customer base of water users. The products answer:
Since the program was first funded in 2000, AHPS has been deployed in flood-prone areas of the Upper Mississippi and Ohio River basins. New funding will expand the program to all NOAA Weather Service forecast offices.
AHPS has been a boon for NOAA Weather Service meteorologists and water resource managers trying to keep ahead of the next flood - or drought. In full use, NOAA Weather Service officials expect AHPS to provide significant lead times for flood events, as long as several months in advance.
Peter Gabrielsen, chief of the Hydrologic Services Division for the Eastern Region, said, “Communities will be able to better prepare and respond more effectively to threats from flooding. Barge operators can plan with greater confidence to optimize shipping over the nation's inland waterways; and water resource managers will have expanded forecast information on which to base decisions for reservoir operations from flood control, water storage, and power generation, to mitigating the effects of drought.”
NOAA Weather Service river forecast centers and weather forecast offices monitor and forecast flood potential throughout the year. As a result of special emphasis placed on late winter and spring conditions, the NOAA Weather Service National Hydrologic Assessment is available on the Web.
The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.
On the Web
Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS): http://www.nws.noaa.gov/oh/ahps
National Hydrologic Assessment: http://www.nws.noaa.gov/oh/hic/nho/index.shtml
Bi-weekly Flood Outlook: http://www.nws.noaa.gov/oh/hic/nho/index.shtml
River Forecasts and Water Information: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/hq/about_ahps.html