Famous Floods

In the 20th century, floods were responsible for the majority of deaths and property damage as a cause of natural disasters. The number one cause of lost lives due to a flood is when people are taken by flood currents. Damage to property happens from inundation. Flood currents can also destroy and even demolish buildings as erosion damages foundations.

Take into account the following facts-

  • Most deaths in floods are because of flash floods.
  • Half of all flash-flood deaths happen in a vehicle.
  • Ninety percent of deaths in a hurricane are due to drowning.
  • Most homeowners insurance does not include flooding.

Some of the most famous floods in the history of the United States:

The Red River Flood took place in April of 1997, in the Red River of the North in North Dakota and Minnesota. The flood affected Fargo and Winnipeg, but the most damaged cities were Grand Forts and East Grand Forts. The Red River Flood resulted in billions of dollars in damages, and it was caused by heavy snowing and extreme temperatures. New dikes were built to prevent damages in the event of further flooding.

There was another historical flood in the Red River in March of 2009, also the result of spring snow-melt.

Great Mississippi Flood of 1927

On April 15, 1927, fifteen inches of rain fell in eighteen hours. This caused a flood that inundated the levees. This caused the Mounds Landing to break, and the Mississippi River flooded an area 50 miles wide and 100 miles long. It caused over $400 million in damages and killed 246 people in seven states. The flood affected the states of Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

The Johnstown Flood

The Johnstown flood is known as The Great Flood of 1889 in the city where it took place, Johnstown, Pennsylvania. It happened on May 31, 1889. Several days of continued and very heavy rainfall caused the South Fork Dam to flood. It had failed and the rainfall caused a torrent of 4.8 billion gallons of water that killed over 2,200 people and caused $17 million in damage. The American Red Cross did its first major disaster relief during the Johnstown flood.