Hurricanes in the metaverse could save lives in reality – WSB-TV Channel 2

Athens, Ga. – Researchers at the University of Georgia hope that the Metaverse will help save lives when a real disaster occurs.

The university is testing a simulated hurricane with residents on Georgia’s coast.

The goal is to allow people to see the dangerous effects of a storm like wind, rain and storm surge without risking their lives. Then, in the event of an actual evacuation, homeowners would be more prepared to respond.

Dr. Sun Joo ‘Grace’ Ahn is an associate professor at the University of Georgia. Her team is working on the simulation and study called “Hurricane World.”

“The more practice and experience you have in a realistic situation; helps you better prepare for those events,” Ahn said. Severe Weather Team 2 Meteorologist Brian Monahan.

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After a quick demonstration, Monahan passed on the experience.

The Metaverse is different from other virtual reality like video games because it involves almost all of your senses.

The simulation begins in a beach house. Monahan got a feel for the area and studied the layout. He then navigates to the “bedroom,” where the television is warning of the incoming storm.

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Everything seems normal until suddenly…

“My power just went out. I can see things starting to go down,” Monahan said as he moves through the simulation. “I’m starting to see I made a bad decision hanging out here along the coast as the storm comes in. “

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The tendency to ignore warnings is something researchers are working to reduce.

“If the perceived threat is too high, people basically start to avoid the message. They don’t want to deal with it if it’s overwhelming,” Ahn told Monahan.

Suddenly the simulated window shatters, shattering glass.

“The glass breaking, I really felt and feel like I’m in the storm right now,” Monahan said.

Channel 2 action news Speaking to Georgia Emergency Management Agency meteorologist Will Lankston.

He explained in these types of situations, people may not understand the risk.

“You hear stories all the time from people who’ve been through something and they’re like, I’ll never do it again.” Lankston said. “I think it will help people visualize things and go through it without actually putting their lives at risk. It can be very helpful to understand what the risk is.”

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After the study on Georgia’s coast, UGA has plans to work on simulations for inland weather events like flash flooding and tornadoes.

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