All Weather News

Explaining Flood Types

There are many types of flooding that can impact us across the country, including river flooding, areal flooding, and flash flooding.  These are different types of one of the deadliest natural disasters in the United States.

Flash flooding is the most dangerous kind as it can happen in the blink of an eye!  This is when water levels rise within six hours of the cause, which can be from heavy rain and sometimes rapid runoff from elevated terrain.

River floods happen when the water level rises to the point it spills out of its banks and inundates typically dry areas.  Some of the causes include ice jams, rapid snow melt, heavy rain, or dam failures.  This type of flooding will be classified as minor, moderate, or major depending on the water height and potential impacts.

Areal flooding develops at a slower pace and can occur more than six hours after moderate to heavy rain begins.  Think about flooding covering large areas such as farm land and neighborhoods as a visual example.

It’s important to pay attention to the type of flooding that could threaten your neighborhood so when a watch, warning, or advisory is issued, you know the best way to prepare.  Just remember – flooding can happen anywhere in the United States, and during any time of year.

About the author
Meredith is a Certified Broadcast Meteorologist as designated by the American Meteorological Society.  She was born and raised in Cleveland but has worked from coast to coast covering almost every type of weather.  She's been live out in the field during destructive tropical storms on the Gulf Coast of Florida, raging wildfires in Southern California, and covered the wreckage from tornadoes in t... Load Morehe Great Plains. In 2009, she reported on the damaging hail storm during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and in 2017, the historic California winter storms that produced record rain totals and devastating flash flooding.  Prior to joining WeatherNation, Meredith worked at KEYT/KKFX in Santa Barbara, CA, KOTA-TV in Rapid City, SD, WWSB-TV in Sarasota, FL, and began her career as an intern at WGN-TV in Chicago.  She was Santa Barbara's "Favorite Weathercaster of the Year" in 2016 and the Community Partner of the Year in 2017 for her volunteer work with Make-A-Wish Tri-Counties and awarded with the 2018 Valparaiso University Alumni Association First Decade Achievement Award. Meredith co-chairs the American Meteorological Society Station Scientist Committee, which focuses on raising greater awareness & outreach when it comes to science education for viewers.  She's also an accomplished reporter, producing weather and science stories including rocket launches at Vandenberg Air Force Base and the new GOES-16 satellite and it's impacts on weather forecasting.  Meredith's also worked on features that took her paragliding along the coast, white water rafting in Northern California, learning to surf in the Pacific Ocean, and how to be an aerial photographer while flying a single engine plane!

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