Ellen L. Comes



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The ability to predict where flooding will occur during different intensity hurricanes is an essential tool that could save many lives; such information would allow populations in the most critical areas to be evacuated first. During Hurricane Sandy, New Jersey was one of the hardest hit states as it was right in the storm's path as it made landfall. Should New Jersey find itself in the path of another hurricane in the future, the state would benefit to be aware of which coastal areas will flood and thus should evacuate first. Furthermore, as climate change affects the sea levels, an interesting predictor can be used to determine how the flooding of coastal New Jersey will change during hurricanes as sea levels rise. This information from analysis could be used for determining suitable locations for future development project sites and how many more people will be affected my flooding caused by hurricanes. The Sea, Lake and Overland Surges from Hurricanes (SLOSH) model was developed by the National Weather Service to estimate storm surge heights. The Delaware Bay SLOSH model basin will be overlaid over three coastal counties of southern New Jersey, including Cape May County. The flood risk areas are the areas that have an elevation below the theoretical surge height provided by the model. A variety of hurricane intensities will be used to highlight high-risk areas within the county. Once these high-risk areas are established, recent US census data will be used to analyze the socio-economic impacts of the flood areas to answer the question: how many people will be affected? Furthermore, by taking into consideration the rise in sea level that is likely to occur, how will these high-risk flood areas change and who will be affected?

Publication Date


Project Designation

Capstone Project

Primary Advisor

Shuang-Ye Wu

Primary Advisor's Department



Stander Symposium project

Using the SLOSH model to predict flood hazard areas along the New Jersey coast: both present and future risks as sea levels rise