March showers bring…flood waters?

Shauna Roesch

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We all know the age-old saying “April showers, bring May flowers,” but those April showers hit sooner and more dangerously this year.  An unprecedented spring flood could harm more than 200 million people this year.


Large parts of the US could experience major flooding through May as forecasts anticipate record levels of precipitation, according to a report released March 21.  More than 200 million people in 25 states are at risk, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) warned. Nebraska, Minnesota, and Iowa have already been hit with flooding this year after being slammed with the wettest winter in known history. According to Time News, parts of the Mississippi and the Red River of the North Basin received rain and snow up to 200 percent above normal  While in Nebraska, heavy rain and melting snow killed at least three people and left two missing. Governor Pete Ricketts called the weather event “the most devastating flooding we’ve probably ever had in our state’s history.”

However, officials say this is just a preview of the spring flood forecast.  April to June is expected to bring above-average precipitation in the majority of the country, increasing the flood risk.  While melting snow could add to the risk. Major or moderate flooding is forecast for 25 states.

“The areas of greatest risk for moderate to major flooding include the upper, middle, and lower Mississippi River basins including the mainstream Mississippi River, Red River of the North, the Great Lakes, eastern Missouri River, lower Ohio, lower Cumberland, and Tennessee River basins,” the outlook report says. Nearly two-thirds of the Lower 48 states are expected to be at “elevated” risk of flooding this spring.


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