Storm risk calculator could save your life

New website helps residents better understand storm-related risks

HOUSTON - A new storm-risk calculator website will help residents pinpoint the threat of a possible storm right at their address.

The City of Houston and Rice University unveiled the website Wednesday to help Harris County residents better understand the risks to their particular neighborhood.

"What we want is for people to know what their situation is. Don't wait until something happens. Get an assessment today," said Houston Mayor Annise Parker.

Harris County residents can log onto, answer a few questions and find out what dangers a category 1 through 5 storm poses to their neighborhood.

The idea is to arm people with information to make the best hurricane preparation plan for them, officials said.

The site will also help when an actual storm is threatening.

"We will be streaming data from the National Weather Service. We will be updating every six and as frequently as every four hours, estimates for risk from flood, surge, and power outages. We will want people to be able to use the website carefully, quickly, and efficiently," said Dr. Bob Stein with Rice University.

Officials said the site is still a work in progress and will be continually updated as new data is incorporated and as users provide feedback to the site developers.

A smart phone app is also planned for next year. has a new Hurricane app for iPhones and Androids. Download it today to keep on top of storms and help prepare.

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