Atlanta flooding

Floods can and do kill people

Flooding may not be sexy compared to imagery of Cat-4 hurricanes and EF-5 tornadoes. But flooding is a top killer! Flooding takes more lives each year than hurricanes, lightning, or tornadoes.

Yes, we ALL just want to get home or to wherever we’re going. But if you drown you never get there.

We’ve seen it all over the news recently with Ida in Louisiana/Mississippi and in New York/New Jersey etc. and from a separate system in Tennessee. And yet, and yet and yet....

People keep walking and driving into flood waters (including last night in Metro Atlanta) because “it won’t happen to me”, “this is different”, “I can make it I can do this”, “its not that deep, I know this area”, “I don’t want to be late”, “I am tired and just want to go home” etc.

All the dead people said that, too.

Water does not have to be chest high or even waist deep to lift and float even a heavy car or a person.

SOPE CREEK rose 17 feet:

And even a small amount of water covering a sidewalk, road, or path can hide a hazard beneath you can’t see:

In my 40+ year experience in the weather biz most of the worst floods come with little or no warning and often without a Flash Flood Watch ever having been issued, and many warnings come only after flooding has begun.

This is because the heaviest rains (except for tropical systems) are often from small localized thunderstorms or mesoscale developments surface or aloft that are very difficult to forecast, rather than from large-scale systems which are more predictable.

For more follow me on Twitter @MellishMeterWSB.

Kirk Mellish

Kirk Mellish

Meteorologist

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