Day five of Severe Weather Awareness Week is all about flooding, which many of us in Nebraska and Iowa are unfortunately all too familiar with after March 2019.
In our area, the two most common types of flooding we experience are river flooding and flash flooding. River flooding can typically be forecast in advance and the river water will rise slowly over time and remain high for days. During flash flooding, there is usually little to no warning as water rapidly rises in a matter of minutes and then levels typically fall again in less than a day. Of course, as we saw in the flooding of March of 2019, water doesn’t always play by the “rules.”
Flooding is often so deadly because people do not respect the power of water. It only takes six inches of fast-moving water to carry away an adult. A small car can be swept away in just 12 inches of fast-moving water. Larger vehicles take 18 to 24 inches of fast-moving water to be swept away.
Because water is so strong and you don’t know how roads may be washed out from flooding, you should NEVER, EVER drive into flood waters. Remember to “Turn Around, Don’t Drown.” It is also not safe to play in flood waters since the water is dirty and again, you may not see dangers in the water until it is too late. Make sure you have a plan so you can evacuate if needed during any type of flooding.