White House grant helps researchers predict flooding in Tidewater region

Flooding in the Ocean View area of Norfolk during Tropical Storm Hermine on Saturday, Sept. 3. (Photo: Aaron Kurtz/WAVY)

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Researchers will be installing new water sensors in Virginia’s Tidewater region to better predict flooding.

The College of William & Mary says a grant from the White House is behind the new technology. The goal is to help Newport News and surrounding communities protect themselves from flooding.

Readings from the new sensors will feed into a high resolution computer program. It can predict the routes that floodwaters will most likely take as they flow in local cities. The program was developed by the Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences, which is part of William & Mary.

The region already suffers from widespread flooding during rain storms and hurricanes. Scientists say it will only get worse with sea-level rise.

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