Storm surges are the rise of water levels due to offshore low pressure weather systems such as hurricanes.
The water level is also affected by the tide, so when combined with the surge, can make for a very dangerous amount of water coming your way.
So if a hurricane is in the forecast be prepared for storm surges, which cause much damage and take the lives of many people each year. Be prepared to evacuate.
Listen to the authorities who will communicate important updates and directives via radio, television, the internet and at times telephone messaging systems. Always have a battery operated radio in the event the power goes out. Do not stay at home if your house or apartment is in the danger zone.
On the left you can see the Impact of a Storm Surge (Wikipedia).
The National Hurricane Center uses the SLOSH model to forecast storm surges. The model is accurate to within 20%. SLOSH stands for Sea, Lake, Overland Surges from Hurricanes.
Prepare in advance, as with any other kind of potential emergency situation that may occur in your region and you'll fare better than if you didn't.
Obviously storm surges pose a significant danger to life and property for the affected areas, and taking advantage of advanced forecasts warning you of what is coming, you can plan accordingly.
Here are some links to help you to learn more about storm surges.
2. Wikipedia - Storm Surges
The following information is from the Get Prepared site of the Government of Canada.
For more info on storm surges
Storm Surges - Teacher's Guide
Storm surge can occur along all coastal areas of Canada. It can also occur in large lakes, such as the Great Lakes. A storm surge consists of very high waves and high water levels caused by wind and air pressure. It often results in coastal flooding. A storm surge can occur at any time of the year and can be particularly damaging in icy waters of winter.
Storm surges can happen quickly, without allowing much time for preparation. Residents, particularly those living in low-lying areas near the coastline, should prepare in advance.