Stormy Weather


Why do flash floods kill so many people?

Simply put, people don’t seem to recognize the power of flash floods and the fact that even a half foot of rushing water can knock down an adult and sweep him or her away. Moving flood waters just a few feet deep are capable of pushing cars and small trucks. Floods can either drown you, or they can kill you by carrying deadly debris. The other factor, of course, is that flash floods catch people by surprise, and if they happen at night, those who are sleeping can certainly be caught unawares. Sometimes, too, people can just lack a little common sense. There have been many stories of people who were standing in dry river beds when a flash flood suddenly barreled down on them; instead of running up the river bank and to safety, they ran downriver in the vane hope of outrunning the rushing waters. This is how a number of deaths occurred during the 1976 flood that hit Big Thompson, Colorado.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Weather Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App