All Weather News

Building a Weather-Ready Nation: Spring Flooding

8 Mar 2021, 10:15 am

After a major early spring flooding event, John Van Pelt spoke with John Gordon from NWS Louisville about lessons we can all learn to be safe this spring.

The National Weather Service issues many hydrology related products. Some are to warn you of potential hazards; others are information statements to keep you up to date on changing weather and river situations. Below are the most commonly issued products along with a brief explanation of what they mean to you:

“Take Action!” when these products are issued

Warnings or Advisories are issued when confidence is greater than 80% that an event will occur. Depending on the type of event, these may be issued anywhere from hours before an event to days in advance of an event.

+Flash Flood Warning
+Flood Warning
+Flood Advisory
+Coastal/Lakeshore Hazardous Message
+Special Weather Statement

“Be Prepared” when these products are issued

Watch products associated with flooding are typically issued within a day or more of the event. The confidence level for an event to occur when a Watch is issued is 50-80%. When a Watch is issued, you should begin to gather more information about the situation and determine what actions you will need to take should a warning be issued.

+Flash Flood Watch
+Flood Watch

“Be Aware” when these products are issued

Outlook products are issued days, weeks or even months in advance of the event. The confidence level for an event highlighted in an outlook to occur is less than 50%. When an Outlook is issued, you should take note. This serves as a “heads-up” that you may be impacted and gives you a general timeline of when the event could occur.

+Hydrologic Outlook
+Hazardous Weather Outlook

Products to keep you informed

The products listed below are produced to keep the public and NWS partners up to date on the latest forecast information.

+Area Forecast Discussion
+Hydrometeorological Discussion
+River Forecast
+Flash Flood Statement
+Flood Statement
+Hydrologic Statement
+River Recreation Statement
+Quantitative Precipitation Forecast
+Public Information Statements

CREDIT: National Weather Service Flood Safety Campaign

About the author
Karissa is the Director of On-Air Operations at WeatherNation. Karissa grew up loving math and science, but really fell in love with Meteorology while attending the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. After two summers of storm chasing in the central plains, she knew that it was the career path for her. Standing in front of a thunderstorm and feeling the cool outflow knock her over was an e... Load Morexperience she will never forget. After two years at COD, she transferred to Metropolitan State University of Denver. Karissa graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelors of Science in Meteorology. Her high school and college speech and meteorology professors were extremely supportive and pushed her to succeed. Before joining the WeatherNation team, she previously worked as the Morning Meteorologist at KCAU-TV in Sioux City, Iowa and at WMBD-TV in Peoria, IL. She recently was part of a National Edward R. Murrow award winning team for breaking news for their coverage of the EF-4 tornado in Washington, Illinois. In her free time, Karissa enjoys cooking and trying new foods. She is a self proclaimed 'TV Junkie' who can get into just about any show. She is a die hard Chicago sports fan who loves attending professional sporting events.