DENVER, April 13, 2017 – The Urban Drainage and Flood Control District (UDFCD) will launch its 39th annual flash flood prediction program this Saturday, April 15. The program serves the seven-county Denver/Boulder metro area and operates in close partnership with the National Weather Service by providing daily heavy precipitation outlooks and notifying cities and counties concerning developing flood threats.
Early flood detection is a vital part of UDFCD’s flood warning services, which is enhanced by a large network of automated rain and stream gauges known as the ALERT System. This network provides continuous, real-time monitoring of flood conditions and alerts local authorities when threatening conditions occur. Twitter users can also receive notifications from the ALERT System when heavy rainfall is occurring in the region.
Forecasters at Skyview Weather hired by UDFCD provide essential meteorological support by calling 911 communication centers in each county. The weather information is then relayed to appropriate agencies, organizations and persons who make public warning decisions and prepare for possible flooding.
During the September 2013 floods, UDFCD’s local flood warning program provided critical information that enabled emergency managers and response agencies to protect many lives. While the floodwaters and debris tragically claimed nine lives in 2013, this number was small in comparison to the 143 lost during the Big Thompson Canyon flash flood that happened on July 31 of 1976.
As we enter the 2017 flooding season, UDFCD urges everyone to avoid low-lying areas during periods of heavy rainfall, including bikeways and hiking trails that frequently overflow.
The Urban Drainage and Flood Control District was established by the Colorado legislature in 1969 to protect people, property and the environment by working regionally with local governments to address drainage and flood hazards that cross county and municipal boundaries. This is accomplished through a combination of preservation, mitigation and education activities. UDFCD serves a population of approximately 2.8 million and covers an area of 1,608 square miles that includes Denver, parts of six surrounding counties, and 32 incorporated cities and towns.
For more information, visit www.udfcd.org/flood-safety/
Contact: Kevin Stewart, firstname.lastname@example.org, 303-455-6277