Public Information Statement
Current Versions [Current]
NOUS41 KRNK 061300
PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BLACKSBURG VA
800 AM EST FRI MAR 6 2015
Severe Weather Preparedness Week in North Carolina is March 1-7, 2015
Today's Topic: Flash flood safety
Flash flooding in North Carolina usually occurs when a large amount
of rain falls in an area over a short period of time. The ground can
only soak up so much water in a given time...and when the rain rate
exceeds what can infiltrate into the ground or run off into drainage
systems or streams...flooding is likely to occur.
Hurricanes...tropical storms...and ordinary thunderstorms can
produce flash flooding.
More people die from floods each year than from
tornadoes...lightning...or hurricanes. Forecasters can usually
predict where flooding will occur when a hurricane or tropical storm
affects an area. However...when dealing with
thunderstorms...predicting flash floods can be VERY DIFFICULT due to
their isolated nature. Flash floods usually occur in low-lying areas
where water can collect or in cities where water runoff from
impermeable surfaces can fill roads or storm drains quickly.
In the past 10 years...flash flooding has occurred in North Carolina
over 1000 times...amounting to damages on the order of hundreds of
millions of dollars...and resulting in numerous fatalities. Being
prepared and knowing how to stay safe will help you and your loved
ones survive a flood.
Prepare: Knowing your flood risk is the best way to prepare for
flooding. Determine if you live in or near locations that are prone
to flooding. You can find out if you live in a flood plain by
visiting our partners at FEMA at https://msc.fema.gov.
Be aware: Find the latest forecasts and hazardous weather conditions
at http://weather.gov and http://water.weather.gov. Forecasters in
NWS offices work around the clock to ensure watches...warnings...and
advisories are issued to alert the public to hazardous conditions.
The same information is available on your mobile device At
http://mobile.weather.gov. Most cell phones are able to receive
flash flood warnings via the Wireless Emergency Alerts system. Visit
http://www.nws.noaa.gov/com/weatherreadynation/wea.html for more
Another tool to alert you to hazardous conditions is NOAA all
hazards radio. This nationwide network of radio stations broadcasts
continuous weather...river and other emergency Information direct
from NWS offices and emergency officials. For more
Be safe: Flooding is one of the leading causes of weather related
fatalities in the US. On average...flooding claims the lives of 89
people in the US each year. Most of these deaths occur in motor
vehicles when people attempt to drive through flooded roadways.
Many other lives are lost when people walk into flood waters. This
happens because people underestimate the force and power of
water...especially when it is moving. The good news is most
flooding deaths are preventable with the right knowledge.
Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock over an adult. Only
eighteen inches of flowing water can carry away most
vehicles...including large SUVs. It is impossible to tell the exact
depth of water covering a roadway or the condition of the road below
the water. This is especially true at night when your vision is more
limited. It is never safe to drive or walk through flood waters.
Any time you come to a flooded road...walkway...or path...follow
this simple rule: turn around, don't drown.
Remember these flash flood safety tips:
1. If a flash flood warning is issued for your area...or if there is
any possibility of a flash flood...move immediately to higher
ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
2. Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can
make you fall.
3. Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your
car...abandon the car and move To higher ground...when water is not
moving or not more than a few inches deep. You and the vehicle can
be swept away quickly. If your vehicle is trapped in rapidly moving
water...stay in the vehicle. If the water is rising inside the
vehicle...seek refuge on the roof.
4. Do not disregard or drive around traffic barricades that close
off flooded roadways.
5. Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams...rivers or
creeks...particularly during threatening conditions.
Understanding the different flood hazards and knowing the actions to
take before...during...and afterwards can help you protect your
life...the lives of your loved ones...and your property. Prepare
now by visiting http://www.floodsafety.noaa.gov.
Be sure to take some time this week to learn more about severe
weather safety. Learning and practicing severe weather safety when
the weather is good will allow you to react more quickly when the
weather turns bad. You can learn more about severe weather safety
by visiting the North Carolina Department of Public Safety
preparedness website at readync.org. This web page features an
abundance of Information...and links to a free cell phone app...that
will help you plan and prepare for the severe weather season.