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What Is a Storm Surge?

Storm surges occur when storms like hurricanes, tornadoes, and cyclones create strong winds that increase the water levels in bodies of water. They lead to devastating floods that cause loss of life, destroy property, and impact the local ecology. 

Who Is at Risk for Storm Surges?

Storm surge flooding can happen in towns near any body of water, including rivers, lakes, and the ocean. In particular, wetlands and coastal communities are in the line of danger. With around 94.7 million people in America living on the nation’s coasts, many different residential communities and commercial business are at risk of storm surges, including:

  • Coastal homeowners: In 2017, nearly 30% of the country’s population lived in coastal homes. Hurricanes and tropical cyclones can cause disastrous storm surge flooding in these areas. Products like TrapBag® can help to create a storm surge barrier and protect homes and their occupants.
  • Coastal commercial businesses: Hurricanes can lead to damage that causes businesses to have to close their doors until repairs can be made or a new location can be found. Hurricane Irma led to nearly 12% of local businesses closing. Storm surges and the flooding they create are one of the most dangerous and destructive parts of a hurricane. Using TrapBags as a flood barrier can keep businesses safe and their doors open once the storm has passed.
  • Waterfront hotels: Hotels along ocean coasts, rivers, and lakes are at risk of flooding from storm surges. Tornadoes and hurricanes can cause floods in these areas. TrapBags are reliable flood bags that can lessen or even prevent damage from ever reaching your commercial property.
  • Great Lakes towns: The ocean coasts aren’t the only place affected by storm surges. Towns near the Great Lakes coasts should take precautions, as these lakes are also prone to flooding with storm surges. TrapBags allow lakeshore towns to prepare ahead of time.
  • Riverfront activity centers: Heavy rainfall can lead to storm surges near any body of water. For those who build their business directly on riverfronts, it’s vital to take steps to protect your company and potential visitors. Tubing, kayaking, and canoeing companies could be in danger after hurricane weather or tornadoes lead to flooding. TrapBags can stabilize riverbanks and protect nearby infrastructure. 
  • Environmentalists: Conservationists conduct much of their research near bodies of water. Storm surges could destroy long-maintained research as well as the environment they’re working to protect. TrapBags help protect shorelines, dunes, and coasts from storm surge flooding. These flood bags serve as storm surge barriers, offering hurricane protection, dune stabilization, and erosion control.

The Difference Between Floods and Storm Surges

Storm surges lead to flooding that is potentially more dangerous than a typical flood. How can a storm surge flood differ from typical flooding? While they can both create the same devastation, they’re caused by different factors and can arrive with different levels of force. Storm surges often have strong waves that completely destroy buildings that aren’t protected, while typical floods are standing water that continues to rise and flow.

Storm Surge Flooding Causes

  • High winds: High winds, whether alone or paired with another major storm, are a leading cause of storm surges. Natural disasters create winds strong enough to blow water back onto shores with incredible force. This water then floods nearby towns.
  • Hurricanes: Even category one hurricanes come with wind speeds of nearly 100 miles per hour. Category five hurricanes can reach upwards of 157 miles per hour. These intense winds, mixed with the rain they carry and the water blown from nearby bodies of water, hit land fiercely. The water flowing from the storm surge can come with intense waves that create massive amounts of destruction.

Typical Flooding Causes

  • Prolonged rainfall: Most typical floods are caused by prolonged amounts of rainfall. Even in towns with no bodies of water, the rain adds up, saturating the soil. If the town doesn’t have ample protection or properly functioning drainage systems, these floods can be deadly.
  • Climate change: Melting glaciers that come with climate change are more and more becoming the norm in flood causation. As the ice melts, water levels rise and infiltrate nearby towns.
  • Dam or levee failure: For rivers with dams or levees implemented, the unthinkable can happen. When these systems fail, it can be catastrophic. It’s important to stabilize those structures properly to avoid disaster.

How to Prevent Storm Surge Damage

Build a Dam, Dike, Levee, or Water Barrier

Reduce your town’s vulnerability to storm surge flooding with dams, dikes, levees, and water barriers. TrapBags can be used to create any of these structures or to strengthen your current systems. They’re utilized in the same manner to control the flow of water, protecting land and property in its path.

Increase and Protect Vegetation 

Heavily vegetated areas like marshes can save towns. How can a marshland prevent flooding in a nearby town? Rain gardens, permeable pavement, prairieland, and wetlands slow the progression of large streams of water by absorbing it as it travels. TrapBags can be used alongside these methods in “sponge cities” to further slow the flow and allow water to be absorbed. 

Create an Efficient Drainage & Containment System

As snow and ice melts or rainwater runs off creating floods, a functioning drainage system or containment unit is a necessity. TrapBags can be used to create a stormwater detention basin to drain excess water away from homes and businesses. 

Invest in Erosion Control

Storm surges can lead to erosion that creates more damage through landslides and destroys dunes and other natural structures. Implementing TrapBags as erosion control ahead of time can prevent this.

Prepare Ahead of Time

TrapBags are a way to prevent storm surge damage in advance. Towns can implement this form of storm surge protection any time, whether it’s during stormy seasons or months ahead of time.

Get Life-Saving Storm Surge Protection with TrapBags

Protect your town from the devastating effects of storm surge flooding. There are many ways to prevent storm surges from destroying your infrastructure and causing loss of life, but TrapBags can strengthen any method you utilize. Save lives and keep your city safe with TrapBag.

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