What is a storm surge? WRN-AmbassadorLike a tsunami, a storm surge is a coastal flood or rising water emergency. These often occur as a related issue to low pressure weather systems like hurricanes and tropical cyclones.  A storm surge can cause flooding and evacuation in coastal areas of shallow water and inland areas where water sources running to the sea can back up. Along the coast, storm surge is often the greatest threat to life and property from a hurricane. In the past, large death tolls have resulted from the rise of the ocean associated with many of the major hurricanes that have made landfall. Hurricane Katrina (2005) is a prime example of the damage and devastation that can be caused by surge. At least 1500 persons lost their lives during Katrina and many of those deaths occurred directly, or indirectly, as a result of storm surge. stormsurgevsstormtide_sm