USGS coastal flood maps assist emergency planning for Hurricane Lane

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As Hurricane Lane approached Hawaiʻi, personnel in the Honolulu Emergency Operations Center on Oahu contacted Curt Storlazzi of the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center to ask for information on potential coastal flooding that could help them direct emergency-management services to areas of higher risk.

As Hurricane Lane approached Hawaiʻi, personnel in the Honolulu Emergency Operations Center on Oahu contacted Curt Storlazzi of the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center to ask for information on potential coastal flooding that could help them direct emergency-management services to areas of higher risk. Storlazzi’s team was already working on 10-year, 50-year, and 100-year flood maps for all U.S. coral reef-lined coasts. The team quickly produced preliminary coastal-flood maps of the Hawaiian Islands for the Emergency Operations Center. On August 24, the day before Lane’s closest approach to Hawaiʻi, USGS Emergency Management Specialist Anna Stull wrote to Storlazzi: “You should all know these maps are providing the only printed situational awareness aids related at this time. Thank you all so much!” Storlazzi’s group plans to publish a comprehensive set of maps this fall.

ap shows part of an island with small blocks drawn on top to indicate varying levels of flooding zones.

Map of west Maui showing preliminary coastal-flood zones.