Flash Flooding, Surface Water, Getty Images, Climate Change, Drains And Sewers

Flash Flooding, Surface Water

Extreme weather: What causes flash flooding?

Cities across the world are at risk of extreme rainfall overwhelming their streets

2/8/2021 6:00:00 AM

Flash floods usually happen during intense rainfall – when the amount of water is too much for drains and sewers to deal with.

Cities across the world are at risk of extreme rainfall overwhelming their streets

27 July 2021, 9:27 am·3-min readPedestrian walking through floodwaterFlash flooding affects cities across the world and has become more common because of climate change.Parts of London and the south of England were left underwater after heavy rain in July.

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What is flash flooding?Flash floods usually happen during intense rainfall - when the amount of water is too much for drains and sewers to deal with.It can occur very quickly and without much warning.Roads can become unpassable - with vehicles abandoned - and homes and shops damaged by floodwater.

Floods can affect key public infrastructure including transport networks and hospitals. In London, some hospitals had to.Why does it happen in cities and towns?Urban areas are more likely to experience this type of "surface water" flooding because they have a lot of hard surfaces - everything from paved front gardens to roads, car parks and high streets. headtopics.com

When rain hits them it can't soak into the ground as it would do in the countryside.An example was seen when New York City was hit by Storm Elsa in July, flooding the subway system.The city's transit authority president, Sarah Feinberg, said "if the drains at the street level can't handle the water, it goes over the curb and then makes things even worse".

Water had come through subway vents and down the stairs, she said.In many places - including much of the UK - old sewer systems were built based on historic rainfall projections.Dr Veronica Edmonds-Brown of the University of Hertfordshire said the growth of London was also a problem as its Victorian era drainage system "cannot cope with the huge increase in population".

Is flash flooding becoming more frequent?Many factors contribute to flooding, but climate change makes extreme rainfall more likely.A warmer atmosphere can hold more moisture and so these storms become more intense.According to Prof Hayley Fowler, of the UK Climate Resilience Programme, flash flooding used to be "relatively unusual".

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the main culprit ? over urbanization and deforestation Not only that, barren lands without forests plus Overmuch of concrete jungles will cause flooding, some inundated. Forests are very important in our ecological systems, must be preserved in any costs, they gave us carbon dioxide and oxygen, etc.

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