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Frequently asked questions during flood events. - interesting questions to ask bf

Frequently asked questions during flood events.-interesting questions to ask bf

Frequently asked questions during flood events.
Where can I get detailed river information including current stages and forecast stages?
Detailed river information is available from our Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service page.
This page can be found at http://www.crh.noaa.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=grr.
I have seen the river forecasts change occasionally...Why the change?
Hydrologists use computer models to produce a river forecast. One important input to the models
is rainfall. Each new model run incorporates the latest new rainfall in the last 24 hours. If
additional heavy rain has fallen since the previous forecast, the new river forecast will likely
change to reflect the new data. In addition to actual rainfall, river forecasts also use the amount
of future or forecast rainfall expected during the next 24 hours. This can change greatly and can
have a major impact on the river forecast. In addition, the forecasts may be adjusted based on
actual flow measurements taken during the event by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) hydrologic
technicians. Visit the USGS at http://water.usgs.gov/.
How do you measure the current water levels?
The National Weather Service relies heavily on a network of river gages operated by the U.S.
Geological Survey (USGS). Data is received from these river gages either by phone telemetry or
satellite. In addition, during times of flooding, USGS technicians are out taking flow
measurements and relaying that back to the NWS and other agencies which provides vital
information for our river flood warning and forecast program.
USGS Hydrologist making measurements during high flow.
What is a river stage?
A river stage represents the level of the water surface of a river or stream above an established
datum at a given location.
What is meant by the term flood stage?
Flood stage is an established gage height for a given location above which a rise in water surface
level begins to create a hazard to lives, property, or commerce. The issuance of flood warnings
for river locations is linked to flood stage. Flood stage is not necessarily the same as bankfull
What is the meaning of a "100 year" flood?
The 100-year flood or x-year flood refers to the probability of those events occurring. That is, for
a 100-year flood, there is a 1% chance in any given year of having a flood of that magnitude. For
a 500-year flood, there is a 0.2% chance of having a flood of that magnitude occurring.
It should be stressed that the 100-year and 500-year events are independent events, from the
perspective of probability. That means that if one of those events occurs, it has no effect on
future events occurring. In other words, if a 100-year flood event occurs, that does NOT mean
that people are "safe" for 99 years. The risk of having the flood in any given year is the same,
regardless of if it occurred recently.
If your building is in the 100-year floodplain and has a 30 year Mortgage... it has a 26% chance
of experiencing a 100-year flood during the life of the loan (vs. 4% chance of a fire).
What should I do in preparation for a flood?
Make an itemized list of personal property well in advance of a flood occurring. Photograph the
interior and exterior of your home. Store the list, photos and documents in a safe place.
Memorize the safest and fastest route to high ground. Assemble a disaster supplies kit
containing: first aid kit, canned food and can opener, bottled water, extra clothing, rubber boots
and gloves, NOAA Weather Radio, battery-operated radio, emergency cooking equipment,
flashlight and extra batteries.
If you live in a frequently flooded area, keep sandbags, plastic sheets and lumber on hand to
protect property. Install check valves in building sewer traps to prevent flood water from
backing up into the drains of your home.
Know the elevation of your property in relation to nearby streams and other waterways, and plan
what you will do and where you will go in a flood emergency.
What should I do when a flood threatens?
If forced to leave your property and time permits, move essential items to safe ground, fill tanks
to keep them from floating away and grease immovable machinery.
Store a supply of drinking water in clean bathtubs and in large containers.
Get out of areas subject to flooding. This includes dips, low spots, floodplains, etc.
What should I do during a flood?
Avoid areas subject to sudden flooding.
Even six inches of fast moving floodwater can knock you off your feet, and a depth of two feet
will float your car! Never try to walk, swim or drive through such swift water.
Do not attempt to drive over a flooded road. STOP! Turn around and go another way.
Keep children from playing in floodwaters or near culverts and storm drains.
What should I do after a flood?
Boil drinking water before using. If fresh food has come in contact with floodwaters, throw it
Seek necessary medical care at the nearest hospital. Food, clothing, shelter and first aid are
available at Red Cross shelters.
Use flashlights, not lanterns or torches, to examine buildings. Flammables may be inside.
Do not handle live electrical equipment in wet areas. Electrical equipment should be checked
and dried before being returned to service.
Is flood damage covered by my homeowners insurance?
Flood damage is excluded in nearly all homeowners and renters insurance policies but, if desired,
can be purchased as a separate policy.
Where can I find information about flood insurance?
The official site of the National Flood Insurance Program is at http://www.floodsmart.gov.
Where do I get flood insurance?
Any licensed property/casualty insurance agent can sell a flood insurance policy. If you
experience trouble in locating an agent, contact the National Flood Insurance Progam's (NFIP)
agent referral program at 1-888-CALL FLOOD.
Is there a waiting period before my flood insurance policy becomes effective?
There is a 30-day waiting period before a new or modified flood insurance policy becomes

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