El Niño Flooding

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Flooding can cause various hazards, especially for Los Angeles County. Los Angeles County has had issues with flooding and El Niño could possibly lead to severe flooding and mudflows. Los Angeles County coastal areas have been severely affected by El Niño three times during the years of 1977-1978, 1982-1983, and 1997-1998 (FEMA, 2011). During these years El Niño damaged residential and commercial areas and cost the city millions of dollars in damages (FEMA, 2011). Issues within the Los Angeles flood system can make El Niño more severe if they are not fixed. With the heavy rainfall expected during the upcoming El Niño, the city of Los Angeles is at increased risk from effects, such as landslides, mudflows, and flooding. El Niño causes the water temperature to get warmer (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 2015). It can also lead to heavy precipitation in some areas and drier weather in other areas (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 2015). California has been in a drought for the past four years, but El Niño will not end the drought …show more content…

The coastal areas that are near slopes and hills are at risk of mudflows and landslides (California Coastal Commission, 1995). A wildfire can weaken the soil and if a storm was to come, the soil could easily be weakened further and cause a landslide or mudflow (California Coastal Commission, 1995). This drought and upcoming El Niño combined can make the soil very weak whether it is through wildfires or precipitation (California Coastal Commission, 1995). Living in the highlands can help protect residents from flooding, but puts them at the risk of landslides or mudflows (California Coastal Commission, 1995). Mudflows (also referred to as debris flows) are hazardous because they carry debris downslope that can severely damage homes and possibly endanger lives for those that live at the bottom of the slope (California Geological Survey,

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