What is storm surge and why is it dangerous?

Early Friday morning Hermine became the first hurricane to make landfall in Florida in 11 years. Hermine, since downgraded to a tropical storm, has brought up concerns about storm surge.

Storm surge is defined as "abnormal rise of water generated by a storm, over and above the predicted tides," according to NOAA. As it reaches increasingly shallow waters, this powerful vertical movement of water is pushed ashore, AccuWeather explains. This causes flooding, especially when the coast juts inland, like on the Gulf Coast, where Hermine made landfall.

Floods from storm surges are particularly powerful and can be deadly, such as during Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy.
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