75 flood gauge sensors have been installed across North Carolina to provide emergency managment workers, and first responders with early detection of flooding.
Community members in Lumberton have seen severe flood issues in the past two years, due to Hurricane Matthew and Florence, but the low cost monitor might change that.
“The more water, more pressure, and you’ll get the depth of the water,” said Gary Thompson interim risk management chief.
The Department of Homeland security is working with three vendors to evaluate, design, and test inexpensive flood gauges around Winston-Salem, Boone, Goldsboro, and Lumberton.
“We wanted to put some in the areas that we can test in harsh weather conditions,” said Thompson.
The sensors will be able to rapidly measure rising water and report flood conditions. Typically flood sensors can run up to $20,000, but this new sensor is expected to cost less than $1,000 per unit.
“To be able to use these low cost gauges it will give us the opportunity to put more gauges across the state, which will enable us to provide information to more people, more areas, in a quicker reaction during flood events,” said Thompson.
This device will help people evacuate on time and know which roads around the area are flooded.
“We’re testing a variety of different things with the gauges, how they perform under different weather conditions and how they communicate,” said Thompson.
The flood gauges will remain in place for 6 months while they are being tested.