One of the most advanced storm impact forecasting systems got put through its paces earlier this week in a state often saturated by flash floods. That system sports a long name and an even longer history.
RI-CHAMP stands for Rhode Island Coastal Hazards Analysis, Modeling, and Prediction. Dr. Austin Becker took the lead in crafting that name and the system itself for use in places where practicality is paramount.
“We hope that this gives you the information that you need to make the best decisions possible,” he imparted to planners with the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency before they sprung into action.
Those planners proceeded to work through practice exercises from within the bowels of their state operations center. Activities were artfully designed to test the efficacy of RI-CHAMP during adverse weather events.
Determining the extent to which shoreside settlements may be fraught with floods before they strike is possible with RI-CHAMP. That functionality comes from a code base built on the storied ADCIRC Prediction System.
Both platforms were conceived through the Coastal Resilience Center with funding provided by the Department of Homeland Security. Federal stipends have enabled RI-CHAMP to evolve for eight years and counting.
That evolution will continue as outlined in a new work plan drafted earlier this month by Becker. His abstract mentions supporting the Rhode Island Department of Health and other enthusiastic new adopters of RI-CHAMP.