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OU researchers heading to Florida to study Hurricane Dorian

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NORMAN, Okla. – As a hurricane makes its way toward Florida, a team of researchers from the University of Oklahoma will be heading into the storm’s path.

Scientists from OU and the NOAA National Severe Storms Laboratory are on the road to Florida in order to collect data as Hurricane Dorian makes landfall.

Organizers say they hope to get a better understanding of all hurricane components, which will aid in the development of cost-effective building codes to lessen future damage.

“We want to help mitigate property damage by working with engineers and using our data to improve the building and construction codes needed to develop a more resilient national infrastructure in the future,” said OU School of Meteorology professor Michael Biggerstaff.

OU students Jeffrey Stevenson, Alec Prosser, Jordan Laser, Noah Brauer and Addison Alford have been deployed to Hurricane Dorian.

Officials say Alford is responsible for creating a software tool that creates preliminary wind maps that are distributed in near real-time to local emergency managers. Preliminary wind maps are also available to the public through a partnership with AT&T and The Weather Channel once radar is set up.

The goal of the OU and NSSL project is to improve forecasts of damaging winds, deadly storm surge, and flooding associated with landfalling hurricanes.

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