Flash Flood In Birmingham

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Flash flooding in Birmingham, AL: Working Title, replace before turn in.

Kathrin Ignelzi
Jacksonville State University

Abstract

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Flood Insurance Study Birmingham, Alabama is “relatively flat and highly urbanized, with storm runoff directed through storm sewering into streams” (FEMA, 2010, pg 18). The concern is the runoff “sometimes exceeding the capacity of the streams to safely transport the water downstream” (FEMA, 2010) which has caused millions of dollars in flood damage. Lindell, Prater & Perry (2007) describe flash flooding occurring “when runoff reaches its peak in less than six hours, which usually occurs in hilly areas with steep
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Village Creek “flows in a general westerly direction for approximately 14 miles through the center of urban Birmingham” (United States Corps of Engineers, 1980, pg 1). Over 700 houses have been removed as part of a flood mitigation program by the City of Birmingham. While many homes have been removed, the area is still prone to flooding and affecting families and businesses. “Village Creek flood plain makes up 53% of Birmingham’s Special Flood Hazard Area” (Federal Emergency Management Agency, 2000). Even with implemented mitigation, this area will continue to cost the community in incident…show more content…
Having many ideas on the table ensures that the most effective means for the city, as well as the community, are addressed. According to FEMA examples of plans include engineers utilizing structural control, emergency managers using activities geared towards warning/response, and land planners leaning towards regulations (2007, pg. 7). Having a planning committee that includes multiple agencies and groups provide a higher chance of success. The involvement of local stakeholders is essential to an effective plan. Lindell et al. divide stakeholders into “social groups, economic groups and governmental groups” (2007, pg. 21). Among social groups are the local households, private sector (religious, NGOs and NPOs). Economic groups are the businesses in the community. “Public utility companies are critical business stakeholders and their services include: electricity, water, sewage treatment and disposal, solid waste management, and telecommunications” (Lindell et al., 2007, pg. 24). The governmental groups include town/city, county, state and those at the federal

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