Meteorologists thought we had issued excellent warnings. The Wall Street Journal has a superbly reported story about what went wrong in the Philippines with the warnings of Typhoon (they called) Yolanda.
Here is what the storm surge looked like.
I think people in the U.S. know a storm surge acts like a tsunami, but do they? Feel free to chime in.
This is why social scientists can help us make storm warnings more effective.