HURREVAC is an end-product of the National Hurricane Program’s Hurricane Evacuation Studies. Its origins date back to a program called ‘Decide’ that was developed in 1987 by John F. Townsend, a meteorologist employed by the National Weather Service in Charleston, SC. The purpose of ‘Decide’ was to couple NHC’s forecast track data with HES clearance times and compute Evacuation Decision Times for South Carolina. Early use of the program came with Hurricane Hugo in 1989.
FEMA, together with the other federal partners of the National Hurricane Program have supported HURREVAC operations, maintenance, and enhancement throughout the program’s 30+ year history.
In the initial years, HURREVAC was in DOS with rudimentary DOS graphics. Separate versions of the program had to be developed for each state. As DOS graphics improved from CGA to VGA, storm surge inundation maps were digitized and incorporated into the program. A separate wind decay tool was also developed for inland counties.