NOUS41 KBTV 040900
Public Information Statement
National Weather Service Burlington VT
500 AM EDT Fri May 4 2018
...Severe Weather Awareness Week in New England and New York...
The National Weather Service, along with all the New England states
and the state of New York, have proclaimed this week as Severe Weather
Awareness Week. Today, we look at flash flooding.
Historically, flooding has been the number one natural disaster
in loss of property and life in Vermont and northern New York.
The term "flash flood" refers to rapid rises in streams and
rivers, usually 6 hours or less. The term "flood" is reserved for
longer duration flooding. Both are equally serious, if a warning
for either is issued, action should be taken immediately.
Most flash flooding is caused by heavy rain from thunderstorms.
Smaller creeks and streams are particularly vulnerable to flash
flooding, especially in mountainous terrain such as the Montgomery
Vermont flood in July 1997, much of the North Country during
June of 1998, Hancock in August 2008, and Ellenburg in August 2010.
Heavy rain from remnants of tropical storms have also created
flooding in the North Country, such as tropical storm Dean in 1995,
tropical storm Floyd in 1999 and Irene in 2011.
One of the best defenses against the threat of floods is to stay
informed. Listen to NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio to stay updated
on the latest forecasts, statements, watches and warnings. Know
your surroundings. Areas near creeks, rivers, or lakes are all
susceptible to flooding.
Heavy rain can make even the smallest stream a raging torrent. Rain
far upstream can cause flooding at a downstream location, even
though you have not witnessed any rain at all.
A flood or flash flood watch means conditions are favorable for
flooding to occur. A watch may be issued several hours before
flooding is expected. This is the time to make preparations and keep
informed. If a flood or flash flood is observed, or a warning is
issued, take action immediately. If you are in a flood prone area,
move to higher ground immediately as evacuation routes may be cut
off, leaving you stranded.
If you are in your vehicle and flood waters are rising around you,
abandon the vehicle and move to higher ground. Never try to drive
across bridges or streets covered by flood water, the water may
have eroded them making them unsafe. Most flood fatalities occur
at night, be especially cautious after dark when it is harder to
recognize areas of high water.
More information on severe weather as well as forecasts and other
weather information can be found at www.weather.gov/burlington. Also,
visit our NWS Burlington Facebook and Twitter sites for more