Current Watches and Warnings
Maine, Interior Cumberland
Public Information Statement
Statement as of 7:00 AM EDT on April 29, 2016
The National Weather Service has declared the week of April
25th through 29th, severe weather awareness week in New
England. This is the last in a series of five public
information statements on various topics related to severe
... Severe weather awareness - floods and flash floods...
In addition to lightning, high winds, hail, and tornadoes,
summertime thunderstorms also bring the threat of flooding
and flash flooding to northern New England. In the
summertime, most flash floods are caused by heavy, slowly
moving thunderstorms which can produce excessive rainfall in
an area in just a short period of time. In addition to the
rainfall, topography, soil conditions, and ground cover help
determine how much of the rainfall soaks into the ground and
how much of the rainfall runs off into streams and rivers.
Last year, on August 18, 2.45 inches of rain in 45 minutes
and caused a flash flood in Concord, NH, and a large sinkhole
on I-93 that caused an estimated $100,000 in damage. On
September 30, 4 to 6 inches of rain caused a flash flood in
Skowhegan resulting in $300,000 in damage.
Nationwide, floods and flash floods are the greatest storm-
related killer, claiming the lives of about 85 people
annually. Similar to the rest of the nation, floods and flash
floods are the number one storm-related killer in New
England. In addition, floods and flash floods are
responsible for a considerable amount of public and private
Nationally, more than half of last year's flood fatalities
were caused by people attempting to drive through flooded
areas. Other fatalities were caused people attempting to
run, walk, swim, or just fell into a flooded area. As little
as 2 feet of water will float most cars and small trucks. If
your vehicle begins to float, you lose complete control over
the vehicle. If your vehicle stalls in a flooded roadway,
abandon it immediately and seek higher ground. The water may
sweep the vehicle and its occupants away.
Dam failures can also lead to floods or flash floods. While
not always caused by the weather, dam failures can lead to
extremely fast rises in river and stream levels.
Here are several fatal flood and flash flood events that
occurred in Maine and New Hampshire since 1996.
Mar 13 1996 Alton, New Hampshire - a catastrophic failure
of an earthen dam on Meadows pond caused a
flash flood downstream of the dam. A women
who was trying to flee the flood waters in her
pickup truck drowned after her vehicle was
washed off the roadway and into a ravine.
Jul 13 1996 Bristol, New Hampshire - three to four inches
of rain from the remnants of Hurricane Bertha
caused many small rivers and streams to flood.
A 10-year old boy playing in the rain-swollen
Newfound river was swept to his death.
Oct 21 1996 Scarborough, Maine - four to 19 inches of rain
caused very serious flooding in New Hampshire
and western Maine. One man drowned when he
drove his car into a flooded roadway. Unknown
to the man, the Road had already been washed
Mar 31 1998 Franklin County, Maine - snowmelt, caused by
record-breaking warmth, combined with recent
rainfall to cause many rivers and streams to
rise. One man drowned when he drove his truck
into a flooded roadway.
Jun 27 1998 Bridgewater, New Hampshire - heavy, slow-
moving thunderstorms caused the Baker river
and it's tributaries to rise rapidly. One man
drowned when he was sucked into a culvert
while attempting to clear debris from the
culvert. A second man was injured.
Apr 16 2007 Lebanon, Maine - a woman and her 4-year old
granddaughter that she was carrying were swept
to their death as they attempted to cross a
flooded roadway on foot.
Aug 07 2008ashland, New Hampshire - a 7-year-old girl
drowned when a bridge washed away as her
family tried to drive out of a flooded
To alert the public to the threat of flooding, the National
Weather Service issues flood and flash flood watches and
warnings. A Flood Watch indicates flooding/flash flooding is
possible, and is usually issued in anticipation of heavy
rainfall. A flood/Flash Flood Warning indicates that
flooding is imminent or is already occurring. If you hear
that a flood/Flash Flood Warning has been issued for your
area, move immediately to higher ground if flood waters
Here are some flood/flash flood facts and safety tips.
* Never drive a car into a flooded roadway. More than
half of all flash flood fatalities are vehicle related.
* Keep away from streams during heavy rainfall events.
Swiftly moving water is extremely powerful and can
easily overpower a person.
* Keep children inside and away from flooded streets,
culverts, and streams.
* Report any flooding to the appropriate authorities.
* If advised to evacuate, do so immediately.
* Obey all Road blocks and barriers, even if the flooding
has receded. Flood waters may have undercut the Road
surface or left dangerous debris in the roadway.
* If you live in a flood prone area, have a plan in case
the water starts rising quickly.
- Alaska - Areal Flood Advisory , Special Statement , Record Report
- Arizona - Record Report
- Arkansas - Severe Thunderstorm Watch , Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Flash Flood Warning , Flash Flood Warning , Flood Warning , Flash Flood Watch , Special Statement
- California - Wind Advisory , Record Report
- Colorado - Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Public Information Statement
- Connecticut - Public Information Statement
- Illinois - Flood Warning
- Indiana - Flood Warning , Public Information Statement
- Iowa - Flood Warning , Public Information Statement
- Kansas - Flood Warning , Special Statement , Public Information Statement
- Kentucky - Public Information Statement
- Louisiana - Flood Warning , Lake Wind Advisory
- Maine - Special Statement , Public Information Statement
- Massachusetts - Public Information Statement
- Michigan - Public Information Statement
- Minnesota - Record Report , Public Information Statement
- Mississippi - Flood Warning
- Missouri - Flood Warning
- Montana - Record Report
- Nebraska - Flood Warning , Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Public Information Statement
- Nevada - Record Report
- New Hampshire - Public Information Statement
- New Jersey - Public Information Statement
- New Mexico - Wind Advisory , High Wind Warning , Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Fire Weather Warning, Fire Weather Watch , Fire Weather Warning
- New York - Public Information Statement
- Ohio - Public Information Statement
- Oklahoma - Severe Thunderstorm Warning , Flood Warning , Flash Flood Warning , Flood Advisory, Areal Flood Advisory, Flash Flood Watch , Areal Flood Advisory, Flash Flood Watch , Areal Flood Advisory, Flash Flood Watch , Flash Flood Watch , Flash Flood Watch , Special Statement
- Pennsylvania - Public Information Statement
- Rhode Island - Public Information Statement
- South Dakota - Flood Warning , Public Information Statement
- Texas - Flood Warning , Areal Flood Advisory , Flash Flood Watch , Coastal Flood Advisory , Coastal Flood Advisory, Coastal Hazard Statement , Wind Advisory , High Wind Warning , Lake Wind Advisory , Fire Weather Warning , Record Report
- Utah - Winter Weather Advisory
- Vermont - Public Information Statement
- Wisconsin - Record Report , Public Information Statement
- Wyoming - Winter Weather Advisory , Winter Storm Warning , Special Statement