Floods

Their deadly power of water

Main types of floods & how they form:

  1. Overbank- rain often overflows a river, causing it to flood nearby areas
  2. Flash- small amount of time with a lot of rain, forming fast and powerful floods
  3. Ice Jams- Ice holds back a body of water and eventually breaks through
  4. Costal- water brought up from the ocean, flooding the coast nearby (mostly caused other disasters)
  5. Engineering- a human made dam breaks, releasing all it's held back water


Where floods are most common

Definitions say that floods can happen anywhere (which they really can). Mostly it is a large amount of water building up in normally dry area. However, there are more common places with certain geographical features.


Most common places for floods:


  1. flood plains (obviously)
  2. river deltas
  3. near large bodies of water (oceans, seas, dams, & rivers)
  4. areas near mountains or surrounded by mountains
  5. coasts
  6. areas near dams man made dams


Why floods occur where they do

The main reason why they happen where they do is because of the geographic conditions of the area. Being close to water is a definite risk for floods, especially being by the ocean. Ocean floods are normally caused by other disasters, but it happens anyway. Also, areas with large bodies of water like rivers and lakes are at risk of overflowing due to rain fall and cause massive amounts of water to flow wherever. Most common places and reason why they occur is in places with poor drainage or ability to disperse incoming water, being why flood plains are how they are.

Local and global impact of floods

Often, massive amounts of water causing damage and sometimes death are the most common local impact of a flooded area. Also, peace of mind can be taken since people can no longer feel safe or peaceful anymore because of the disaster. Globally, it often causes aid from other countries to be sent. However, it may cause panic or worry as well for other countries if they are vulnerable to floods too. This may cause them to set up, check or improve their own defenses against floods and other disasters. Locally and globally, the impact of floods is quite significant in the world.

Los Angeles Flood of 1938 & 2013 Colorado Floods

<------ Nah really?

LA Flood:

This happened in a very short amount of time and caused massive damage and cost to fix it by the government. What happened was two storms, second bigger than first, went over the city into the nearby mountains. The storms released huge amounts of water in the mountains, causing the rivers in the mountains to over flow and run down into the low level area that LA was at. This devastated the city for a long time and was considered to be a 50-year or maybe even 100-year flood of Los Angeles. Now, multiple defenses have been set up by the US Army Corps of Engineers to prevent this from happening again in the near future.


2013 Colorado Floods:

This event was kind of similar to the LA Flood in 1938 in a few ways. First being how it all got started by a massive amount of water gathering in a short time to create the floods. Like the water coming down from the San Gabriel Mountains in LA, some water came off the Rocky Mountains and into the north central and east part of Colorado. Combined with flash flooding of rivers and on the streets proved this was a deadly time for floods in Colorado state history. This proved that even though we are a mile above the oceans, we are still threated with floods as well.


*Flood Fact: The Chinese actually broke a dam on purpose to release it's waters, killing the invading Japanese in a valley during a war.*


Flood prevention technologies

Over the time man has lived, it has come up with a few ways to predict floods. Some work better than others and some work in interesting ways. A often very effective way to tell if a flood is coming is a simple weather forecast. Heavy rain and strong winds are a common combination for floods anywhere. Another interesting way to predict is using a satellite made by NASA to predict them. It works by TRMM (Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission) giving information amount how much water is in the ground all over the Earth. This is effective since there is already water there in the ground, any added water stays on the surface result in flood waters. So far out of analysis events, it has proven to be fairly effective since the logic and science is very much true. Weather forecasts are decently accurate and the TRMM satellite is working effectively. Overall, it is effective but some work could be done to make it better. An idea often brought up is looking in history and trying to piece together a pattern or rhythm of floods, it seems possible but doesn't sound full proof either.

Economical Impacts of floods

Costs of damage in historic floods

<-------Bugatti Veyron

Average annual cost of flood repair in US over past 10 years: $2,600,000,000 per year

LA Flood of 1938: $627,000,000

(that's 251 Bugatti Veyrons)

Colorado floods on 2013: Estimated at over $1,000,000,000

(about 400 or more Bugatti Veyrons)

Damages are a massive problem from a financial standpoint, the can moving things, break them and completely destroy and move houses. Obviously money is an important thing to have after a flood in a populated area.

Organizations that help flood victims

In the United States, most people that help flood victims are government run or organized. FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) are often leading the recovery effort for the US. Other things like Red Cross and the military also aid in ways that they can such as the Red Cross offering care to injured people or the military transporting people in their heavy vehicles and aiding others with the training they are given. Sometimes, international help is given to other, poorer countries that don't have enough money, resources or organizations to do it themselves.


Bibliography

"11 Facts About Floods." Do Something. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.dosomething.org/tipsandtools/11-facts-about-floods>.


Dunbar, Brian. "Predicting Floods Using NASA's TRMM Satellite." NASA. NASA, 14 Feb. 2006. Web. 24 Oct. 2013.

<http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/news/topstory/2005/trmm_runoff.html>.


Postell, Cornelus. "What Places Are the Most Common to Have Floods? | EHow."EHow. Demand Media, 31 Mar. 2011. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. <http://www.ehow.com/info_8145584_places-common-floods.html>.


"Los Angeles Flood of 1938." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 16 Sept. 2013. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Los_Angeles_flood_of_1938.


"2013 Colorado Floods." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 24 Oct. 2013. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Colorado_floods.


"Flood Control." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 23 Oct. 2013. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flood_control.