Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters, except fire, and are the number one weather-related killer in the United States. Types of flooding are often announced by local TV and radio stations. Flood warnings and watches should be taken very seriously. Flash floods are a result of heavy, intense rainstorms dropping large amounts of rain within a brief period of time and usually occur within 6 hours of the rain event. Soil conditions, ground cover and topography can also play a role in contributing to flash flooding. Flooding is normally a longer term event and may last several days or weeks depending upon how much rain has fallen over several days. Urban Floods occur when land, converted from fields or woods to roads, parking lots, or driveways, loses its ability to absorb rainfall. Runoff in urban areas is two to six times greater than on natural terrain. During urban flooding, streets can become swift-moving rivers, while basements can fill up with water.
There are a number of things you should know before a flood occurs:
There are a number of things you can do before a flood occurs to lessen the impact: