The Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency is holding its annual hurricane preparedness conference today.
Emergency response managers and regional officials gather as the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season kicks off. The National Hurricane Center forecasts the season will be average to below-average, with about three to six hurricanes, and only one or two of those likely developing into major storms.
But conference attendees know that’s no reason to let the collective guard down.
The agenda featured sessions with officials from towns in Connecticut and New Jersey hard hit by 2012’s Hurricane Sandy, sharing lessons learned about dealing with the emergency and its aftermath. It also included an update on new types of warnings from the national hurricane center. One of those is the new “potential storm surge flooding map.” It shows where sea water could rise suddenly and how high. Federal officials will begin posting it once a hurricane watch is issued, and updating it every six hours.