Jun 23, 2021

North Carolina State University Hurricane Experts Examine Future of Roads & Flooding

The hurricane experts want to figure out what size hurricanes or extreme weather events we will see in the next 50 to 100 years.

hurricane season

Research at North Carolina State University is examining the future of roads in North Carolina.

According to hurricane experts at North Carolina State University, the team wants to figure out what size hurricanes or extreme weather we will see in the next 50 to 100 years to help the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) build roads that won’t flood, reported CBS 17

The project will span two years and will utilize experts from around the state. The study is in its first year and some results will be revealed in the summer of 2022.

“They need to understand and anticipate these extreme weather events and how they will affect the transportation infrastructure going forward,” said North Carolina State University professor Gary Lackmann, reported CBS 17. “You need all that expertise so that everyone can give you the best information to design something that is going to be resilient to extreme events.”

Due to hurricanes Matthew and Florence, parts of Interstate 95 and Interstate 40 closed for days due to flooding, reported CBS 17, then causing drastic flooding on roads and inundated neighborhoods. 

“We’re taking that initial hurricane simulation, adding some warmth, and making the environment representative of the future, and then running again to look at what the precipitation will look like in the future,” said North Carolina State University graduate research assistant, Katy Hollinger, reported CBS 17.

According to preliminary data, some future hurricanes could bring up to 30% more water to North Carolina, added Hollinger.

NCDOT assistant state hydrologic engineer Matt Lauffer said NCDOT’s goal is to better understand changing weather and how this may impact North Carolina’s transportation network.

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