Talk:2013 Colorado floods

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Pictures[edit]

Can some people upload pics of the event? Is there a reference for the earth dams bursting?   Thanks, Daniel.Cardenas (talk) 15:02, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

I could find many pictures from news sources online. Is it OK to download and upload to Wikipedia as long as there's a reference? http://news.yahoo.com/four-dead-colorado-floods-amid-rescues-scenes-devastation-013925815.html for some examples. Leavit2stever (talk) 17:59, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

No: see WP:NFC. Look for photos from federal agencies, as any work authored by the federal gov't is public domain. postdlf (talk) 22:12, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

Here's a reference to the earthen dams bursting http://www.denverpost.com/environment/ci_24080336/dams-break-at-rocky-mountain-arsenal-and-larimer Leavit2stever (talk) 18:02, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

It appears that any photos taken by the Colorado National Guard should be considered public domain, as the NG is part of the federal government. They can be uploaded to Commons with this template. I've asked a question at Wikipedia talk:Public domain just to make sure there's no controversy there, as I was concerned the National Guard might fall into some kind of intermediate state-federal hybrid and thus not eligible for the usual works of the federal government PD exemption.

Anyway, plenty of CNG photos of the flooding and response here and probably other sources online. postdlf (talk) 17:36, 16 September 2013 (UTC) Other sources for PD photos might be from national parks (under the agencies U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service or National Park Service). The headquarters for Rocky Mountain National Park is in Estes Park, one of the worst hit towns, and a dam burst at Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge that contributed to flooding in Commerce City, so those are both in the thick of it. Other federal agencies that will be involved are USGS, FEMA, and probably something like the Federal Highway Administration given that interstates have been flooded. So as long as a photo is credited to an employee of a federal agency, it will be public domain. postdlf (talk) 17:43, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Scope of flooding and stats[edit]

I'm watching local Denver news right now for this, so I don't have RSs to add for this now, but these are some of the figures we should look for and be able to confirm online and add to the article:

  • 34 state highway bridges destroyed
  • over 17,000 homes damaged
  • over 1,500 homes destroyed

There are also stats for number of people evacuated, in the thousands. Many more people are trapped in mountain and foothills towns that have been completely cut off by roads and bridges washing out, but rescue efforts have been limited by low weather ceiling grounding helicopters.

14 counties have been affected, I think all declared emergencies by the governor.

A lot of this might be available straight from Colorado state agencies websites. Also 9news (local NBC affiliate) is a good source, and updated a lot more frequently than the Denver Post. postdlf (talk) 22:12, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

The map only shows Boulder County highlighted. Can this show all affected counties highlighted? Leavit2stever (talk) 03:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

We'd have to create a new image. Might be best to wait a few days, as that's even changing; counties in NE Colorado (as far out as Logan) are now under flood warning because of a surge traveling down the South Platte. postdlf (talk) 15:41, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
Scratch that...I just found a cite for the 14 counties the governor has declared disaster areas; I'll make a map highlighting those. postdlf (talk) 16:34, 16 September 2013 (UTC)  Done

Here is a nice link to a map of precipitation totals for this storm: http://www.denverpost.com/2013coloradofloods/ci_24101329/colorado-flooding-2013-precipitation-totals?source=hot-topic-bar Leavit2stever (talk) 19:39, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Outline for development[edit]

A lot of this may take awhile as events are analyzed and the impact really can be measured, but here's a rough sketch of the section outline I think the article should move toward:

  1. Background - explaining the convergence of weather events, summarizing the typical weather for September and rainfall for the area, and summarizing the relevant geography, such as watersheds. Also past historic floods; the news
  2. Timeline - laying out the sequence of weather events, the order in which various towns and counties were flooded, when rescue efforts came in, etc.
  3. Impact
    1. Overview - totals on the loss of life and injuries, loss of property, loss of infrastructure
    2. Impact by county - detailing how each area was affected, which towns were evacuated, which bridges and roads were destroyed, what utilities/public services interrupted. Some sections might be merged if neighboring counties had similar experiences, for example. This would also be a good section for organizing which separate articles on communities, highways, etc. need to be updated.
    3. Economic impact - should focus on $$ and impact on specific industries. I've started a section going into agriculture, oil/gas, and tourism impact.
    4. Environmental impact - long term effects of floodwater contamination on drinking water and soil, impact on national parks/wildlife refuges, particular animal species and habitats.

Maybe also a separate section detailing any new weather records. I know that a lot of rainfall totals and river flood peaks were.

postdlf (talk) 21:52, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

  • Concur - Sounds good! --Jax 0677 (talk) 22:57, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

I am a student at Louisiana State University. I will be adding some information to this page as part of a class project designed to add helpful information to wikipedia pages regarding recent natural disturbances. I will include information on the Big Thompson Flood of 1976 to give a historical perspective. I will add info in about hazardous impacts on the area as well as a new section on ecological impacts (mentioned above as a suggested environmental impact). I will also add information to the existing section on Federal aid giving updated and more in depth information. Jonathanhoffmann225 (talk) 05:47, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

1000 year flood[edit]

I think we should remove the line that says "Certain areas of the Front Range are said to have experienced a 1000 year flood event (meaning the annual chance of occurrence is 0.1 percent), as opposed to to the relatively more common 100 year flood event.[18]". In fact, by several definitions, Boulder didn't even experience a 100 year flood. According to the Army Corp of Engineers, the estimate flow for Boulder Creek in a 100 year flood is 12,000cfs (the Boulder gov't website confirms this here), but the flow for Boulder Creek in this event peaked around 5,000cfs. Second, comparing the flood area to FEMA maps of the 100 year flood plain (available here) also shows Boulder's flood waters didn't reach that high. For example, the downtown Boulder area up to Walnut would be underwater in a 100 year event, but that didn't happen here. Same for areas along 55th near Boulder Creek.

The confusion seems to have come from interviews with NWS spokesmen who referred to the amount of rainfall Boulder received over the 6 day period during the flood a 1000 year rainfall event (see: here). But a 1000 year rainfall event is not the same thing as a 1000 year flood, but it seems many journalists - such as the author of the CSM article referenced in this article - erroneously confused the two. I'd be happy mentioning that the rainfall was a 1000 year event in the Background section of this article, citing the NWS spokemen, but we really should take out any reference to this flood event as a 1000 or even 100 year flood event, without further analysis and confirmation from FEMA, US Army CoE, and the USGS. Adagio (talk) 21:13, 20 September 2013 (UTC)

Here's a peice discussing the magnitude of the flooding on Boulder Creek [1]. Maximum flow was slightly less than a 25-year flood. ~KvnG 18:58, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

Proposal to Remove "needs updating" box on Impact by County Section[edit]

Hi all, I updated the section on Impact by County today, 20 October 2014, at the CSU Edit-a-thon. Please review and see if the box should be removed. Thanks Undead q (talk) 21:08, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

I agree, it seems that the situation is no longer developing and as such, no new info is needed to be added, nor are any updates necessary. Theawesome67 (talk) 15:12, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

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