2013 colorado front range flood

October 25, 2020

“Fine sediments can affect attached algae, and by filling spaces between larger grains, fine sediments also can decrease oxygen concentrations within the stream sediments,” he says. A helicopter flight was coordinated by the Emergency Operations Center to evaluate the condition of the dam and spillway. This is a classic scenario for major flooding in northern Colorado. Causes of the Boulder area flood from NBCNews. DSE’s continued to respond to reports of incidents, check the dams whose spillways were operating, and report the status back to the emergency managers. How Winter Fashion Has Changed in 100 Years (PHOTOS), Eerie Vintage Photos of People Battling the Flu. Records date to 1948. Nature will recover and certain species will benefit from this event, but humans don’t have that luxury. 239 S. Limestone Street Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Flash flooding in tributary streams would later evolve into major river flooding on the on Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020. These findings are consistent with his impression that, in general, the most extreme ecological effects of the flooding appear to have been in middle- and low-elevation streams, including many reaches in the North and South St. Vrain rivers, which merge near the heavily flooded foothill town of Lyons. PHOTOS: Colorado’s massive floods of 2013, Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Submit to Stumbleupon (Opens in new window). By most accounts, the rainfall and flooding occurred simultaneously from Colorado Springs in the south to Fort Collins in the north and impacted numerous dams at the same time. The concerns regarding first fill and pool of record conditions and rainfall beyond design standards were the primary drivers that prompted emergency dam inspections. Democratic Republic of the Congo | Français, State of Vatican City (Holy See) | Italiano. In the hardest-hit areas, the rainfall beginning September 9 and ending September 16 matched or exceeded annual averages. The tool calculated an estimated precipitation index (EPI) for the rainfall that occurred and the inspection criteria was developed. The raging floodwaters of South Boulder Creek scoured the creek’s gravel bars, providing what resource managers hope will be ideal conditions for native cottonwood and willow trees to thrive. Floodwater rose to 3 feet in the basement on Sept. 12, 2013. “Collectively, these things have changed the flow rate and the flood events that historically would have happened here,” adds OSMP interpretive naturalist Lynne Sullivan. Extreme rainfall in September 2013 caused destructive floods in part of the Front Range in Boulder County, Colorado. Almost all of the flows were initiated on steep (greater than 25 degrees), south- and east-facing canyon and hogback slopes with upslope contributing areas of more than 3,300 square meters, the largest at elevations above 2600 m. Areal concentrations of the flows show that colluvial soils on sedimentary rocks were more susceptible than soils on crystalline rocks. As a result, the high and significant hazard dams within the affected area performed as designed and were not considered in danger of failing due to overtopping. Recovery of algae populations in plains streams can happen much faster. The DSB’s presence at the EOC’s allowed for direct communication with emergency managers at both the county and state levels and provided both a technical resource for interpreting general and specific dam safety risks and knowledge of dam structures and operations for verification of information being disseminated to the EOC’s, media and general public. In fact, only two other September days featured over two inches of rain, none previously since 1938. So McCutchan and his colleagues will be watching to see how quickly algal populations recover after the flood. If you could not attend the CIRES Western Water Assessment panel discussion on flood, weather, climate today, here it is: Our apologies to those who couldn’t get video feed during the panel. While the physical damage to human infrastructure. Over 350 people joined together to honor the couple who died in the flood. On Monday September 16th, representatives from FEMA, the City of Longmont, and the Colorado Dam Safety Branch were flown to the site to assess the condition. Ecologists consider periodic scouring floods essential for maintaining a healthy ecosystem along the vital Front Range drainages. “Once flows drop and the sediment load is low enough for light to reach the bottom, it might take only a few weeks for the post-flood photosynthetic rates to come back,” he says. This included an incredible 9.08 inches of rain on September 12, alone! “In a lot of our riparian areas, the answer is no. You can see the staggering rainfall totals from this multi-day event at right. Water is delivered to the reservoirs via ditches that run cross-county, in some cases for miles between the stream diversions and the reservoirs. Flood Photos July 2013, Cold or Flu? In the impacted area, the Hydrometeorological Report (HMR) 55A predicted PMP rainfall is on the order of 30 to 40 inches over a period of 72 hours. Cook ( is a science writer based in Colorado. OSMP managers say they hope that the “disturbed” drainages will experience a regeneration of cottonwood and willow trees: Because these native plants need direct sunlight, exposed mineral soils and access to the water table for their seeds to germinate, they thrive on recently scoured gravel bars. Promote internal awareness of resources available through the emergency management network and the process for garnering these (e.g. Develop ways to interface more with emergency managers, e.g. The effects of riparian disturbance may be particularly long lasting, according to McCutchan. By Jeff Lukas, CIRES Western Water Assessment A month has passed since the devastating floods on the Front Range, and it’s a little easier to discuss the positive effects of the extraordinary rain event for the impacted area, and across Colorado. Between chasing down false messages in the media, providing rapid public education, and responding to urgent requests for information, it quickly became clear just how critical effective communication is during emergency response to a flooding event. I would like to subscribe to Science X Newsletter. DSE’s rushed to confirm and clarify incident reports as well as respond to continuous requests for information coming from many avenues including the Governor’s Office. During the course of the storm, the peak 24-hour rainfall over much of the affected area was in the range of 6 to 10 inches. Fake Christmas Trees: Which is Better for the Environment? Before that, he managed daily operations for the photo department, coordinating with news, sports, business and features sections to assign stories and select images for print and digital display. According to the Western Regional Climate Center, the previous all-time record rainfall for any calendar day in Boulder was a 4.80 inch deluge on July 31, 1919., in records dating to 1893. Severe floods can affect not only a stream’s channel but also its riparian zone, riparian predators and transfers of organic matter between the riparian zone and the stream channel. What's incredible about this event is the scope. Flood-damaged … The Big Thompson River overflowed its banks and caused widespread damage on U.S. 34 in Big Thompson Canyon. One exception may be the Preble’s meadow jumping mouse, which is federally designated as a threatened species, whose critical habitat includes riparian areas along several of Boulder’s open space drainages. You can see the staggering rainfall totals from this multi-day event at right. In the long run, the flooding is likely to benefit many native wildlife species. Given the limited access due to the road closures, DSE’s were busy calling dam owners and DWR water commissioners, gathering reports on the status of structures, reviewing conditions that required observation, and briefly reviewing emergency action response. It has been reported (Doeskin, 2014) that this storm ranked in the top three extreme storms documented in Colorado. Type at least three characters to start auto complete. A list of 207 dams meeting the above criteria and therefore in need of emergency inspection was developed. So, Boulder picked up almost nine times their average September monthly almost four days! State officials estimated about 600 people were still stranded in isolated areas. Open space managers hope to revise Preble’s population estimates next year to compare with previous censuses to determine whether the tenuous populations took a hit in September. Susan Elston, overwhelmed after being rescued from the flooded town of Lyons, receives help from a first-aid station at LifeBridge Christian Church in Longmont on Sept. 13, 2013. Where ditches remained intact, the receiving reservoirs filled and began to spill. The entire park was closed to the public. A low hazard structure rating does not mean no hazard. Recently searched locations will be displayed if there is no search query.

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