March Declared Flood Awareness Month in Utah


Utah Governor Spencer J. Cox has officially declared March as Flood Awareness Month in the state. In the declaration, it was stated that flooding causes more damage in the United States than any other severe weather-related event and the potential for flooding and flash flooding events are on the rise in Utah.

Twelve out of 15 of the major disaster declarations in the state of Utah have been related to flooding. Utah, along with most of the western United States, relies on the runoff in the spring from snowpack for agriculture as well as city and industrial water supplies.

While spring comes with a rise in temperature and more time in the sunlight, there are a variety of conditions that also cause rapid snowmelt, severe weather and heavy rains that may increase the risk of flooding. Large amounts of runoff contribute, and it was stated that each cubic foot of compacted snow contains gallons of water.

There are a number of ways that one can be prepared in the event of a flood. A few ways include knowing your risk by checking to see if your residence is in a floodplain, obtaining flood insurance and preparing beforehand by creating a plan, building a disaster supply kit and staying informed.

Fire can also contribute to possible flooding. There were a number of fires last spring and summer, and a wildfire alters the terrain and vegetation of an area, which may turn properties that were once considered low-risk to high-risk. Increased flood risks may last up to five years or longer.

To see if your residence is in a floodplain, please click here. Further information on flood preparation may be found here.

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