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North Carolina Severe Weather Awareness Week
Mar 4th - Mar 10th, 2012
This week has been declared North Carolina's Severe Weather
Awareness Week for 2012. All week long, the National Weather
Service will be issuing informative messages to help you prepare
for severe weather.
Today's topic will be flooding.
Nationwide, flooding causes more fatalities nationwide than any
other type of severe weather. Several factors contribute to
flooding. The two main factors are the intensity of rainfall,
and how long rain occurs over any given location. Topography and
soil moisture also play a role.
Flooding in North Carolina can occur many different ways. Slow
moving thunderstorms can repeatedly move over the same location,
days of steady rain can cause creeks and rivers to flood over large
areas, or thunderstorms moving across a metropolitan area can cause
flooding due to the amount of runoff generated by highly developed
Rushing water in the form of a flood can quickly become deadly.
Just a few inches of fast-moving flood water can knock
you off of your feet. Less than two feet of water will float your
car away. The combination of the force of flowing water, and the
buoyancy of water, make driving into flood waters extremely
dangerous. Most flood deaths occur in automobiles. When approaching
roadways that have water over them, turn around and go the other
way. Turn around, don't drown.
Flooding is dangerous any time of the day, but especially at night
when it is difficult to see. Limited visibility makes it not only
difficult to see flood waters, but also nearly impossible to judge
the depth of the water. Once a vehicle or person is washed
downstream, rescue can be difficult, and puts others at risk.
Knowing your area's flood risk is very important. Check your
homeowner's or renter's insurance. Many policies do not cover
flooding and many areas across north carolina are subject to
flooding although not officially declared within a flood plain.
just because flood damage is not in your policy doesn't mean your
home cannot flood.
Before rain and flood waters threaten, know your home's elevation
and know where you would go if you needed to evacuate. Sometimes
your escape route can flood before your house. Also, realize that
just because areas around your location haven't flooded before
doesn't mean they can't flood in the future.
When flooding is possible, the National Weather Service will issue
a flood watch. This tells you to remain alert to the possibility of
heavy rain and flooding. Once a flash flood warning is issued, then
it is time to take action. When a warning is issued for your
area, it means that flooding has been reported or is imminent.
If advised to evacuate, do so immediately. Move to a safe location
before access is cut off by flood waters. During the flood, avoid
areas subject to flooding. Never allow children to play around high
water, streams, creeks, or storm drains.
When heavy rain and flooding threatens your area, stay informed by
listening to NOAA weather radio, local television, and radio.
More flood safety information can be found at: