Coastal flooding can cause terrible damage and even deaths.
In Europe, storms are the main reason for flooding at the coast, especially if they arrive at high tide.
The larger than usual waves that storms create – called “storm surges” – can be several metres taller than ordinary waves.
This means that they can crash over sea walls and defences, flooding the shoreline and any buildings close to the seafront.
Repairing the damage that flooding does to homes and businesses can be a slow and very expensive job.
So, finding a way to reliably forecast storm surges would give people time to take action – saving lives and money.
Did you know...?
In August 2005, Storm Katrina flooded New Orleans – in places the water was 8 metres deep, and almost 2,000 people died.
Flooding in Britain
During just one week in January 2014, more than 1,800 homes in Britain were flooded.
In 2014, Insurance Ireland said that year’s winter storms and floods caused about €46 million damage.