AbstractMany previous methods of including tidal contributions in statistical estimates of coastal storm surges have used models that couple storm surges with tides at a small number of randomly sampled phases. Applying a small number of samples can introduce substantial aleatory uncertainty into the total water levels in areas where tide ranges are of comparable magnitude to the storm surges, such as much of the East Coast of the United States. The standard deviation of the uncertainty is related to the standard deviation of the tides (sigma_tides) by inverse of the square root of the number of tide samples. The authors applied a data set (provided to FEMA) consisting of 30 historical extra-tropical storms, each run at 4 tide phases (chosen such that two approximately coincided with high tide and two with low tide). The analysis examined tide-only, surge-only and tide coupled to surge model results at 34 stations located by the authors to cover the spatial extent of the study area and to include both open coast and sheltered inland waterways.
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