Record setting rains that fell on Sunday in Texas and Oklahoma are still wreaking havoc as flooding continues in the region. The storms dumped enough water that the rivers and creek banks were not able to contain all of the wet weather flow. Runoff peaked as late as Monday in these areas causing the National Weather Service to advise of continued flooding threats.
With half a million dollars spent to adress direct flooding costs in the U.S. in 2012, flood risk evaluation is still hard to perform, since not all contributing factors are recognized, frequently leading to questionable river basin management decisions. A new study by UC Santa Barbara focuses on the basic principles of flood hazard analysis, indicating that not accounting for channel capacity may result into misleading estimates of the flood susceptibility levels also affecting flood insurance premiums calculation.
As a flooding event is still in progress, real-time information on its extent and the population affected is difficult to obtain, putting rescue crews and associated agencies in a difficult position in terms of planning and decision making. A joint study carried out by two Dutch organizations - Deltares and Floodtags - aims in developing twitter-based real-time flood maps. The project is considered a proof of concept and was presented at the General Assembly of the European Geosciences Union taking place in Vienna these days.
Heavy rains in 2013 lead to devastating floods of rock, soil, and water through many cities and towns that line the Colorado Rockies. Scientists are now considering the importance of large, rare, independent storm events in determining an area’s landscape. Scott Anderson, a geomorphologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Tacoma, Washington and lead author of a new study stated that "while it strikes us as very random, our research suggests this is one of the formative processes in this landscape."
The black veil of air pollution in the industrial valley of Sichuan seems that have played a key role in the deadly flood of 2013, which was the worst that China had ever lived during the last 50 years.
Monsoon season, which is currently hitting India, Pakistan and other Asian countries, causes extensive floods and triggers landslides, with detrimental effects for the citizens of the affected countries. A new mathematical model, currently under development, aims in assessing the extent of anticipated damage and improving the civil protection and warning system.
Areas burnt from wildfires, in north central Washington, are now buried under rocks, mud and water as a result of the heavy rain which fell in the area the last days. There were no reports of injuries however communications through radio and phone are difficult as communication towers were damaged by the fires a few months back. Watch the extent of damage in the video below!
The recently and extensively flooded region of Kashmir is still trying to recover from the disaster and starts evaluating the induced damage particularly to its cultural heritage. Some of the most historic sites of the region were severely hurt and journalist Shujaat Bukhari describes the damage to the monuments.
Switzerland and northern Italy are severely battered by heavy rain in the last days, which caused extensive landslides and cost several lives. Weather forecasts predict that rain will continue to hit the area for the next 24 - 36 hours, leading both countries to issue major flood alerts.