New Bedford Hurricane Barrier Operational Problems

by Saul Cooper,

Serial Information: Journal of the Hydraulics Division, 1968, Vol. 94, Issue 4, Pg. 925-936

Document Type: Journal Paper


Operation of a hurricane barrier with a navigation opening requires the cooperation of those situated on floodprone lands behind the barrier and shipping interests who continually travel through the opening to use the docking facilities in the harbor. The closure criteria at New Bedford for coastal storms has undergone several revisions based upon experience gained during actual operations. The latest criteria takes into account not only the predicted tide and surge but also the windspeed and direction. Many operational problems still exist. The most important are the predictions of tidal surges from undetected coastal storms that form rapidly south of the New England coast and also from storms located several hundred miles east of the New England coast. By telemetering the tide data to the Cape Cod Canal office, which is staffed 24 hr a day, it is expected barrier personnel will be alerted in time to operate the New Bedford hurricane barrier for these types of abnormal tides.

Subject Headings: Gates (hydraulic) | Coastal environment | Tides | Hurricanes and typhoons | Storm surges | Navigation (waterway) | Team building | Freight transportation | New England | United States

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