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“We Were Just Washed Away”: Causes Of Dangerous Flash Floods On Highways

On Behalf of | Sep 25, 2014 | Traffic Accidents

Over the past five years, local microclimates and weather patterns have drastically changed, causing massive flash flooding throughout the entire United States, including Virginia and the District of Columbia. According data from the National Weather Service and the National Flood Insurance Program, flash floods can occur at any time.

A flash flood doesn’t just mean a damp basement. A flash flood can cause a wall of water 10 to 20 feet high.

Unfortunately, these floods can also occur without much warning, stranding you and your family on flooded highways, or even causing tragic vehicle accidents and collisions. This is why it is important to know under what conditions a flash flood could potentially occur in order to prepare yourself for any possible danger.

Where Do Flash Flood Waters Come From?

To protect yourself and your family, make sure you’re aware of the following potential causes of flash flooding. Although they may appear out of nowhere, you can still prepare yourself, and protect your family from getting caught out in the rain.

The four primary sources of sudden floods are:

  • Torrential rain. When the ground is too dry, torrential downpours, massive amounts of water, or slow moving storms saturate the ground until it can no longer absorb the rainfall. The top layer of soil becomes supersaturated; instead of soaking up the water, it deflects it, causing puddling, pooling, and flooding.
  • Large amounts of rain after a drought. When an area has suffered a drought, foliage and plant life die. As a result, when rains finally do pour down on the area, there is nothing there to absorb the water deeper into the soil. Once the top layer of the ground becomes saturated, the excess water begins to pool and then flow to the lowest level.
  • Warm weather after a lot of snow or ice. Rain isn’t the only thing that can cause a flood. Rapidly melting snow and ice can create great amounts of water that cannot be absorbed by the frozen ground. Instead it pools above ground, and gravity forces the waters to flow toward lower elevations and across roadways. This can be a particular problem in our area of the nation, because our rare ice storms are often followed by a quick return to warm temperatures, resulting in a strong possibility of sudden floods.
  • Converging floods. Rain and melting snow can also cause rivers, streams, lakes, and even pools to overflow and break their natural barriers, causing smaller flood waters to flow outward and potentially converge into massive flash floods.

Our Life Preserver for Traffic Accident Debt

When natural disasters such as flash floods put you and your family in peril, it’s your actions and the actions of others that will make the difference between survival and possible traumatic injuries. Don’t let someone else’s poor decision or miscalculation cause excruciating harm to your family. If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a car accident due to the negligent or dangerously stupid actions of another driver during a flood, contact us immediately.

Car accident medical bills and treatment can quickly add up to a sea of debt, and insurance companies can be less than cooperative about throwing you a substantial lifeline. Let us help you and your family make it to dry land. We know how frustrating and complicated car accident claims can be, especially when the guilty party tries to blame nature for his carelessness. Don’t let him get away with it—let our car accident claim experience make him take responsibility for his actions. Otherwise, you never know who may be hurt next. Contact us today for a free consultation and review of your case.

Need more information about flood collision liability and claims? Feel free to browse our site to see how our vast experience and knowledge can help you get the settlement you deserve.