400 new gauges allow NCDOT to monitor flooding in real time on 15K bridges, 3K miles of roadway

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) — A new flood warning system will help NC Department of Transportation monitor road flooding during the next big storm.

The system allows NCDOT to monitor flood levels from 400 different gauges on area rivers and streams. Those gauges will help NCDOT more quickly respond to areas where flood waters are threatening bridges, roads or culverts.

In addition to helping NCDOT and local emergency officials more quickly respond to dangerous problem areas, it will also improve the department’s DriveNC.gov weather-related road closures. That will help drivers be better informed about possible weather-related delays or detours before they hit the road.

“This state-of-the-art warning system our department has created will help us be better prepared for the next major storm,” Transportation Secretary Eric Boyette said. “Even though we’ve had some quiet hurricane seasons recently, we cannot let our guard down.”

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This new system is the fruit of a $2 million investment given to NCDOT after Hurricane Florence in 2018. The state legislature tasked the department with installing more flood gauges and developing improved software to better serve the entire state when the next big storm hits.

The improved system now covers nearly 3,000 miles of roads–mostly east of Interstate 95. It also actively monitors flood conditions on 15,000 bridges and culverts.

NCDOT shows new gauge on NC 42 bridge over Neuse River in Clayton

NCDOT said its team has been training on the new system with smaller storms over the past year.

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