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With Hurricane Season Ahead, National Weather Service Outlines Changes To Storm Warnings

Mar 28, 2017

Hurricane season doesn't officially start until June 1, but preparations are already underway. The National Weather Service outlined some new ways it's warning Floridians about possible danger at a briefing Tuesday in Tampa. 

Daniel Noah is a meteorologist with the agency. He said this year, storm surge warnings will be sent as emergency alerts.

"If you've ever gotten an Amber Alert on your phone, that's what this system is," Noah said. "It will reach many more people very quickly and hopefully people will respond appropriately."

Storm surges happen when rising water moves in from the shoreline, and they can be life-threatening.

Noah said this year, the weather service will also be able to issue advisories about tropical storm systems that haven't developed yet, but could soon create problems.

"With [Hurricane] Hermine from last year, we had to wait until it actually became a tropical cyclone before we could write advisories on it," Noah said. "This year, if we think [a tropical system] is going to be causing impact within 48 hours, we can issue advisories on it before it even has developed"

Noah also pointed out that technology is changing rapidly and providing the National Weather Service with better data "to protect people and property."

At the briefing, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also touted Weather-Ready Nation, a online bank of resources aimed at getting communities prepared for extreme weather and other climate-related events.