Floods overwhelm North Dakota levees; floods kill 175 in China

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:33 PM GMT on June 23, 2011

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Flood waters from North Dakota's Souris River are pouring over the levees protecting Minot, North Dakota today, and flood heights are expected to rise to the highest levels in recorded history tonight. The Lake Darling flood control reservoir located about 15 miles upstream from Minot is full to overflowing, and record releases of water are occurring to prevent the lake's dam from over-topping. By this weekend, the Army Corps of Engineers will open the dam's flood gates to a maximum flow rate of 20,000 cubic feet per second, which is roughly double the flow rate that the levees in Minot can handle. Water began flowing over the levees yesterday, forcing the mandatory evacuation of 12,000 residents. By Sunday, water levels on the Souris River are expected to peak at four feet above the previous all-time flood height, set in 1881. Torrential rainfall in Canada on Sunday and Monday, combined with very heavy rainfall and snow melt over North Dakota over the past month, are responsible for the record flood. The Souris River Basin near the Rafferty Dam in Saskatchewan received four to seven inches of rain Sunday into Monday. Flood heights along the Souris River near the Canadian border upstream from Minot are already two feet above the previous all-time highest mark, and that pulse of water is now arriving in Minot. The unprecedented flood is expected to keep much of Minot underwater for at least two weeks. Fortunately, no new heavy rains are expected over the next five days, though up to 1/2" of rain could fall over portions of the Souris River watershed.


Figure 1. Still frame from a Youtube video of the Souris River in Minot, North Dakota flowing over the levees in that town. The video was shot on Wednesday June 22, 2011, from a North Dakota National Guard helicopter.


Figure 2. Observed (blue line) and forecast (green line) stage of the Souris River in Minot, North Dakota. The river is currently at its 3rd highest level on record, and is expected to rise above the record flood stage of 1558' tonight. The record was set back in 1881. Image credit: NOAA AHPS.

Record rains in China kill 175, do $5 billion in damage
Torrential rains triggered severe flooding in eastern China this week, with the death toll for June floods now standing at 175, with 86 people missing. Ironically, the same region experienced severe drought at the beginning of June. The estimated $5 billion in damage from the floods would make 2011 the third most expensive year for floods in China in the past decade. This year is the second consecutive year floods have caused exceptional damage in China. Last year, Western China saw summer precipitation more than 200% above average, and torrential monsoon rains triggered catastrophic landslides that killed 2137 people and did $759 million in damage. Monsoon floods in China killed an additional 1911 people, affected 134 million, and did $18 billion in damage in 2010, according to the WHO Collaborating Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED). This was the 2nd most expensive flooding disaster in Chinese history, behind the $30 billion price tag of the 1998 floods that killed 3656 people. China had floods in 1915, 1931, and 1959 that killed 3 million, 3.7 million, and 2 million people, respectively, but no damage estimates are available for these floods. During the period 2000 - 2009, China averaged $3.7 billion in damage and 674 deaths per year due to floods and landslides, according to the WHO Collaborating Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters. This does not include the toll from typhoons. Speaking of typhoons, Tropical Storm Meari, currently located a few hundred miles east of the Philippines' Luzon Island, is expected to track north-northwestwards towards China today and Friday. By Saturday, Meari is expected to be a Category 1 typhoon, and will spread heavy rains over eastern China, worsening the flooding situation there--though the heaviest rains will likely remain offshore.



Figure 3. Rainfall amounts in excess of 18 inches (450 mm) fell in Eastern China southeast of Shanghai in a 1-week period, June 13 -19, 2011. A China Daily report from June 18 described the rains in parts of Zhejiang Province as unprecedented. High waters broke 100-meter (300-foot) holes in levees, inundating nearby villages. Some homes were buried in 3 meters (10 feet) of water. This image is based on data from the Multisatellite Precipitation Analysis produced at Goddard Space Flight Center, which estimates rainfall by combining measurements from many satellites and calibrating them using rainfall measurements from the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. Image credit: NASA.



Figure 4. Visitors watch as water gushes out from the Xiaolangdi Reservoir on the Yellow River in Central China's Henan province, June 22, 2011. Image credit: Xinhua.

The Atlantic is quiet
The Atlantic is quiet, but several models, including the NOGAPS and GFS, are predicting that a tropical disturbance capable of becoming a tropical depression could form in the southern Gulf of Mexico in the Bay of Campeche Tuesday or Wednesday. There will be a strong ridge of high pressure over the Gulf next week, which would tend to keep any storm that might form far to the south, with impacts limited to Mexico and perhaps South Texas.

Jeff Masters

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TROPICAL WEATHER DISCUSSION
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
805 AM EDT FRI JUN 24 2011

CARIBBEAN SEA...
A NARROWING UPPER TROUGH IN THE W ATLC EXTENDS ACROSS CUBA NEAR
SANTA CLARA TO THE YUCATAN PENINSULA NEAR N BELIZE GENERATING
CLUSTERS OF SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS FROM
18N-20N BETWEEN 79W-84W. AN UPPER RIDGE EXTENDS E/W FROM THE
TROPICAL ATLC ACROSS THE S CARIBBEAN ACROSS CENTRAL AMERICA. THE
MONSOON TROUGH EXTENDS ACROSS THE SW CARIBBEAN FROM E OF THE
TROPICAL WAVE NEAR 11N79W INTO THE E PACIFIC REGION OVER COSTA
RICA NEAR 10N84W GENERATING CLUSTERS OF SCATTERED SHOWERS/
THUNDERSTORMS S OF 14N W OF 78W TO INLAND OVER PANAMA TO N
NICARAGUA. SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS DOT THE AREA
FROM 14N-17N E OF THE TROPICAL WAVE TO INLAND OVER CENTRAL
AMERICA AND THE YUCATAN PENINSULA. THE TROPICAL WAVE WILL MOVE
INTO THE W CARIBBEAN TODAY THEN ACROSS THE NW CARIBBEAN THIS
WEEKEND AND INTO GULF OF MEXICO EARLY NEXT WEEK. A SECOND
TROPICAL WAVE IS MOVING TOWARD THE W TROPICAL ATLC AND WILL BE
IN E CARIBBEAN BY TUE. THE INTERACTION BETWEEN THE TROPICAL
WAVES MOVING THROUGH THE CARIBBEAN AND SURFACE RIDGE OVER THE W
ATLC WILL MAINTAIN FRESH TO STRONG E TO SE FLOW ACROSS THE
CARIBBEAN INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1918
i do believe that the eastern pacific may also benefit of this type of pattern notice the anicyclone over the area it is retreating alot into that basin

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523. IKE

Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
so i guess you have wet dead grass today
LOL...yes.
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1990,s Hurricane Diana..
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Quoting IKE:

I received .98 inches of rain yesterday. Florida panhandle. Are you in Florida? I know other parts of the state have gotten rain lately.
so i guess you have wet dead grass today
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Link

Link
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just a quick reference

http://assets.weather-forecast.com/maps/static/t_ Ghana.sst.jpg
gulf of guinea 1


http://assets.weather-forecast.com/maps/static/t_ Ghana.sstanomaly.jpg
gulf of guinea 2
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Quoting sunlinepr:

Very well explained by Levi and other bloggers, how that temp. gradient would activate the CV season waves... new knowledge for me...

It would be nice if we knew the sources. Who are the guys who figured this out? Where did they publish?
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516. IKE

Quoting Hurrykane:


Please send some this way!
I received .98 inches of rain yesterday. Florida panhandle. Are you in Florida? I know other parts of the state have gotten rain lately.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
morning bloggers current warfighter model trends are now keeping our future system in the extreme southern boc mex area moving westward into mex instead of out into the open boc looks like it even stays onshore half in boc half over mex lets see what the next set of runs show


the models all seem to be in agreement in developing at least a depression however they are not too hot with the track of it.notice initially how all the models was showing a northward to west progression of the system now it has changed even before it developed so i would not put the faith in tracks but i would say that development is being supported by some meteorologist as well as the models not so much the track but if we were to use an interactive tropical cyclone map it would show the movement of the storm
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Quoting stormpetrol:
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Good morning Hurrykane. It has just started raining here.

Bright, sunny and dry as chip here in South Sound, but I see rain clouds to the east.
Looks like North Side is getting it pretty good. It has stopped here now but it was a good downpour.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
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Good Morning.....Climatology related to sheer at this time of the year is tough to beat with that persistent band of high sheer near TX/MX where the "blob" has been really trying to develop...In the right place at the wrong time sheer-wise but if this same disturbance was further West in the Central Gulf where sheer is only around 10 knots at the moment per CIMSS, we might have had a tropical depression by now.....The SW Caribbean looking interesting per some of the models going into the next several days if the sheer relaxes down there. The Gulf and Caribbean seems really primed to go with the exception of sheer levels at the moment.
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morning


Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1918
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Good morning Hurrykane. It has just started raining here.

Bright, sunny and dry as chip here in South Sound, but I see rain clouds to the east.
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 7631
morning bloggers current warfighter model trends are now keeping our future system in the extreme southern boc mex area moving westward into mex instead of out into the open boc looks like it even stays onshore half in boc half over mex lets see what the next set of runs show
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Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Taz, Remember I told you him is a her LOL



oh oops
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Miami NWS Discussion

LONG TERM (SUNDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY)...THERE IS STILL A LOT
OF UNCERTAINTY IN THE EXTENDED FORECAST. THE GFS AND ECMWF HAVE
BEEN PERSISTENT IN THEIR SOLUTIONS THE LAST FEW RUNS WITH THE GFS
INDICATING A BROAD SURFACE LOW DEVELOPING NEAR THE YUCATAN AND
MOVING INTO THE WESTERN BAY OF CAMPECHE AND WESTERN GULF OF
MEXICO. THIS BRINGS CONTINUED MOISTURE TO THE REGION WITH HIGHER
RAIN CHANCES. THE ECMWF HAS A STRONGER RIDGE AND THUS PUSHES THE
WAVE FURTHER TO THE SOUTH AND ALSO BRINGS IN DRIER AIR OVER THE
REGION AS THE RIDGE BUILDS IN. SO KEPT CLOSE TO CLIMO FOR POPS FOR
THE EXTENDED AND WILL WAIT FOR THE MODELS TO COME TO MORE OF A
CONSENSUS.

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Quoting Tazmanian:




you have too pay him for the shiping and handing part LOL
Taz, Remember I told you him is a her LOL
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
Quoting Hurrykane:


Please send some this way!
I will do my best. What chances do you give for development in the Caribbean in the next few days ?
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
Quoting Hurrykane:


Please send some this way!




you have too pay him for the shiping and handing part LOL
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Quoting caribbeantracker01:
i noticed the area off texas on radar at the moment conditions are not primed however this could change and if the national hurricane center should do anything they might mention this as well.the southwest caribbean is producing an abundance of cold cloud tops indicative that the tropical wave has now interacted with the monsoon low however has not merged but notice the verocity
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Quoting redfish23:
So what are the chances that the showers in the gulf move up to the Freeport Tx area?


well to be almost exact i think it depends on the movement of the front,however if this blob detaches it self then steering currents cud take it close but i don't really see this however anyone remember Humberto the fastest strengthening i think?
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Quoting Hurrykane:


Good morning, Grothar.
Good morning Hurrykane. It has just started raining here.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
So what are the chances that the showers in the gulf move up to the Freeport Tx area?
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Quoting caribbeantracker01:
i noticed the area off texas on radar at the moment conditions are not primed however this could change and if the national hurricane center should do anything they might mention this as well.the southwest caribbean is producing an abundance of cold cloud tops indicative that the tropical wave has now interacted with the monsoon low however has not merged but notice the verocity


Yes.

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i noticed the area off texas on radar at the moment conditions are not primed however this could change and if the national hurricane center should do anything they might mention this as well.the southwest caribbean is producing an abundance of cold cloud tops indicative that the tropical wave has now interacted with the monsoon low however has not merged but notice the verocity
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This time last year:



Tomorrow is Alex's one year anniversary
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Quoting stormpetrol:
Looks like the area off Texas is all bark and no bite, the SW Caribbean on the other hand IMO is about to get popping.
Moisture is on the rise.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
Nothing yet from NHC.

TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT FRI JUN 24 2011

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

$$
FORECASTER AVILA


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Good early morning all.

The tropical wave is interacting with the monsoonal low north of Panama at this time. It will be interesting to see how this feature looks tonight and tomorrow, and if it can develop into something before crossing the Yucatan. This has a lot more time than Alex did, it developed west of Jamaica. I expect we will see 95L within the next 48 hours or so.

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Looks like the area off Texas is all bark and no bite, the SW Caribbean on the other hand IMO is about to get popping.
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 7631
Blobs

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488. MahFL
Seems the flood in Minot is going be be worse than officials first thought.
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something is cooking in the gulf
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Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8263
most of the energy from this monsoonal trough and tropical wave is already over cent america and the e pac. not a betting man but i'd say its going to be another epac gig. have a great wkend everyone railroad earth are one of my favorites http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iReM5ay0Ots
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Good morning to all.

It looks like we will have a hazy day with little precipitation,The next wave will arrive in Puerto Rico by Monday.
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all this bad crap going on we all know it has to do with some kind of global warming. what can we do? nothing. maybe get use to it. wait to cv season.
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482. MahFL
Good morning all, here in Clay Co FL we got no rain, the west sea breeze was too strong.
One thing to remember about FL is thats its been 5 years, half a decade, of no cat 3's hitting FL. Thats half a decade of people moving to FL who have no idea what a hurricane can do, even 300 miles away from one.

No a/c in Fl in summer is a bad situation.
Best thing post hurricane is ice, nothing like a cool drink or a ice pack on your neck to cool you down.

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GULF OF MEXICO...
A BROADENING UPPER TROUGH EXTENDS FROM THE GREAT LAKES AREA SW
ACROSS THE UPPER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY THEN ACROSS E/CENTRAL TEXAS
TO N MEXICO WITH A RELAXING UPPER RIDGE OVER THE W GULF ANCHORED
JUST N OF MEXICO CITY MEXICO EXTENDING AN AXIS NE ACROSS TUXPAN
ACROSS THE GULF ALONG 26N90W TO OVER NE FLORIDA NEAR THE BIG
BEND AREA. A WEAKENING SURFACE TROUGH IS BENEATH THIS UPPER
RIDGE EXTENDING AT 24/0300 UTC FROM 29N93W TO 27N95W WITH
SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS W OF A LINE FROM THE
FLORIDA PANHANDLE NEAR PANAMA CITY ALONG 25N90W TO 21N95W. A
WEAK SURFACE RIDGE EXTENDS FROM THE W ATLC TO THE FLORIDA
PENINSULA. DRY STABLE AIR ALOFT IS OBSERVED OVER THE SE GULF ON
WATER VAPOR IMAGERY. HOWEVER...ISOLATED SHOWERS/THUNDERSTORMS
CONTINUE TO DEVELOP WITHIN 60 NM OF LINE FROM ACROSS FLORIDA
BETWEEN TAMPA AND FORT MYERS TO THE W TIP CUBA. THE SURFACE
TROUGH WILL CONTINUE TO WEAKEN THROUGH THE NIGHT TONIGHT. WEAK
SURFACE RIDGE WILL PREVAIL ELSEWHERE OVER BASIN THROUGH LATE SUN.



Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1918
Morning everyone. We got some nice soaking rain here overnight. This was a genuine departure from the alternate 5-minute shower / 5 day of no rain that we've had the last few weeks. Hopefully we can get another couple of incidents like that before the month is out.




I'm still watching that mean high pressure location, which is still pretty far south so far. Unless we see a fairly rapid retreat over the next 6 weeks, ASO will arrive with a relatively strong AB high sitting in a position to steer storms through the Car, Antilles, Bahamas and FL.
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Good early morning everyone.It looks like the rain has left the Mobile area.I am thankful for the rain we did get.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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