Does the World Really need more Lerts?

Be alert. The world needs more lerts.

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Or does it?

The NWS sent this rather startling “graphicast” Friday. I live under the second “a” in Area. As of Monday, I’ve gotten an inch of rain. Credibility diminishes when alerts are issued for events that never occur.

While graphicasts are better than the old all-caps alerts, they still miss the mark.

We need alerts that are more specific. Here in the hill country, the primary risk is at low water crossings – not large rectangular areas. The locations of these crossings are known. Models can predict flooding at these crossings, what is needed is a system to broadcast alerts to subscribers.

“Turn around, don’t drown” is a catchy slogan, but if you’re trapped between two low water crossings the best thing to do is sit and wait.

I’ve mentioned before how Google could do something similar for traffic alerts. This same thing could be done for flood alerts.

I would like to receive alerts via IM on my cell phone when any water crossing along the path I plan to travel is expected to flood. Alternate route directions would be nice too.

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