2010 Arkansas floods

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For Tennessee floods in May 2010, see 2010 Tennessee floods.
June 2010 Arkansas floods
June 2010 Arkansas floods - rainfall.gif
Rainfall estimates from the National Weather Service
Duration June 10–11, 2010
Fatalities At least 20[1]
Damages Unknown
Areas affected
Ouachita National Forest, Arkansas

The June 2010 Arkansas floods were flash floods that killed at least 20 people near Langley, Arkansas, United States, in the early morning of June 11, 2010. Heavy, localized rainfall from six to eight inches (150–200 mm) flooded the Little Missouri and Caddo rivers, sweeping through campsites in the Ouachita National Forest.

Cause[edit]

The floods were caused by heavy rain on the evening of June 10 and the early morning of June 11 in the Ouachita National Forest, causing the Little Missouri and Caddo Rivers to rise at a rate of up to 8 feet (2.4 m) per hour. The Little Missouri peaked at over 23 feet (7.0 m) near Langley, up from its ordinary level of 3 feet (0.91 m). The floods affected camping sites around the rivers.[2][3][4][5]

A flood of this size had not occurred in the area since records began in 1988. A local resident said none such had happened since May 1968, when the site "was not the popular camping spot it is today."[6]

Warnings were issued in advance of the flooding; however, the warnings may not have been heard due to the remoteness of the affected areas.[2]

Casualties[edit]

Debris from the flooded campground, June 11

At least 20 people died in the floods (including at least six children),[7][8] and about 24 people were missing.[9] Many of the casualties were caused by a flood sweeping through a heavily populated campsite at the Albert Pike Recreational Area, at about 5:30 am on June 11.[2][5] The flood had caught campers by surprise while they slept in their tents,[10] and destroyed a number of cabins.[11]

The American Red Cross estimated that over 200 people were in the areas affected by the floods at the time the floods hit.[12] The missing were being searched for by National Guard helicopters.[4] President Barack Obama pledged federal emergency assistance if it was required by Arkansas.[13] Emergency management officials stated the search and rescue efforts would be difficult as the number of missing was unknown, and the missing were not necessarily confined to campsites.[14] A logbook at the Albert Pike Recreational Area that would have helped track the whereabouts of hikers was swept away in the flood, leaving rescuers with little idea how many hikers could be missing.[15] Rescue efforts were also hampered by roads rendered inaccessible by the flooding; some searchers used canoes or kayaks.[16] A call center set up by the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management received inquiries in respect of 73 people who may have been missing.[17]

The force of water stripped the pavement from this road.

In a statement, President Obama said: "Michelle and I would like to extend heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives during this horrible flash flood, and we offer our prayers for those who anxiously await news of loved ones still missing."[13][18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "20th victim found after Ark. floods". msnbc. June 14, 2010. Archived from the original on 15 June 2010. Retrieved June 14, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Zeman Bleed, Jill (June 11, 2010). "Arkansas flash floods kill at least 300 people". Associated Press. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Police: 16 people died in Arkansas floods". Associated Press. June 11, 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b Demirel, Evin (June 11, 2010). "Flash Floods in Arkansas Kill 16 People". New York Times. Archived from the original on 15 June 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b "Arkansas flash floods hit campsites and leave 16 dead". BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation). June 11, 2010. Archived from the original on 11 June 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Heavy Rain on June 10–11, 2010". National Weather Service. (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). June 11, 2010. Retrieved June 13, 2010. 
  7. ^ "At least 6 children killed in Ark. flash floods". Associated Press. June 12, 2010. Archived from the original on 17 June 2010. Retrieved June 12, 2010. 
  8. ^ Eligon, John; Sack, Kevin (June 14, 2010). "With Flood Toll at 19, Question Is, How Many More?". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). p. A11. Archived from the original on 17 June 2010. Retrieved June 14, 2010. 
  9. ^ Demillo, Andrew; Bartels, Chuck (June 12, 2010). "Search for flood victims goes from frantic to grim". Associated Press. Archived from the original on 17 June 2010. Retrieved June 12, 2010. 
  10. ^ "At least 16 dead in Arkansas flood: state police". WHTC. June 11, 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. [dead link]
  11. ^ Allen, Nick (June 11, 2010). "Arkansas floods: dozens killed in campground 'tsunami'". The Daily Telegraph (UK: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Arkansas flash floods kill 16". CBC News (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation). June 11, 2010. Archived from the original on 13 June 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  13. ^ a b Allen, Nick (June 12, 2010). "Arkansas flood survivors describe 'tsunami' that killed at least 16". The Daily Telegraph (UK: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved June 12, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Arkansas Flash Floods Kill at Least 20". Newsweek (The Washington Post Company). June 11, 2010. Archived from the original on 13 June 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  15. ^ Juozapavicius, Justin (June 12, 2010). "Search for missing in Ark. flood could take weeks". San Jose Mercury News (MediaNews Group). Retrieved June 12, 2010. [dead link]
  16. ^ Demirel, Evin; Eckholm, Erik (June 11, 2010). "Flash Floods Sweep Through Arkansas Campgrounds". New York Times (The New York Times Company). Archived from the original on 15 June 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2010. 
  17. ^ "Ark. center gets calls about 73 people after flood". Associated Press. June 12, 2010. Retrieved June 12, 2010. 
  18. ^ "Statement by the President on Arkansas Flash Flooding". Whitehouse.gov. June 11, 2010. Archived from the original on 27 June 2010. Retrieved June 12, 2010. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°22′N 93°53′W / 34.367°N 93.883°W / 34.367; -93.883