If you’ve visited California this fall or perhaps you have friends that live on or near the coast, perhaps you’ve heard stories about the extremely high tides and epic wave action – enter some explanations from NOAA. Californians living on the coast may be used to seeing so-called “King Tides,” a regular phenomenon where high tides are higher than normal on certain days of the year. This winter, King Tides — known to scientists as perigean spring tides — are even higher due to El Niño, causing flooding in low-lying areas of California’s coast.
With the sudden downpours to which we’re prone at this time of year, and in preparation for storms in the next few months, this is a great time to get educated and prepare for if a flood disaster should strike. The following are just a few of the useful resources available to anyone who lives in or near flood prone areas – stay safe out there!
FEMA has provided an interesting visual overview of what FEMA flood maps are and how the map update process works using the Flood Map Infographic. Year to year, flooding is the most costly disaster in America. Flood maps play a vital role in helping us prepare for flooding by informing communities about the local flood risk. Flood maps help communities to incorporate flood risk into their planning. They’re also the basis for flood insurance rates through the National Flood Insurance Program, which FEMA administers at the direction of Congress. By law, you may be required to get flood insurance if you live in the highest risk areas. But flooding can happen anywhere — about 20 percent of all the flood claims come from areas with lower risk. And you don’t have to live close to water to be at risk.
A newly released interactive California Drought visualization website aims to provide the public with atlas-like, state-wide coverage of the drought and a timeline of its impacts on water resources.
Here’s a clever effort by some folks and companies in the Colorado tech community to help flood victims preserve some of their precious documents and memories forever, simply by getting access to scanning and digitizing hardware and handy tools from a local company. As people begin sifting through their water-logged homes, most will inevitably come across precious memories – photos, slides, videos and other memorabilia – that have become water-logged, buried in mud or otherwise damaged in the disaster.
Flood victims can go to any Memory Rescue Center for information, assistance and resources to rescue their photos, videos, films and other memorabilia. Memory Rescue Centers will have on-site wash-and-dry stations free for use, free take-away information on how to salvage photos and home movies, Flip-Pal mobile scanners free for use, as well as extensive services to digitize photos, slides, videos, film and other memorabilia at a discount.
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The USGS has been collecting some data – well actually, tons of data from the recent record event taken place in Georgia. From the USGS, The flooding around Atlanta this week is one for the record books. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the rivers and streams had magnitudes so great that the odds of it happening were less than 0.2 percent in any given year. In other words, there was less than a 1 in 500 chance that parts of Cobb and Douglas counties were going to be hit with such an event. More information on USGS flood-related activities is available at the USGS Surface Water Information Web site.See below for some impressive before/after photos from the USGS! See here to View a map of real-time stream stage and streamflow monitoring sites.
Miscellaneous September 2009 Flooding Pictures
Normal flow conditions at Big (Vickery) Creek, Chattahoochee National Recreation Area, Roswell, Fulton County, Georgia. Photo by Alan Cressler, USGS.
Flood conditions, Sept. 21st, 2009, at Big (Vickery) Creek, Chattahoochee National Recreation Area, Roswell, Fulton County, Georgia. Photo by Alan Cressler, USGS.