This week is Flood and Wildfire Awareness Week in Colorado. The National Weather Service offices in the state, and KiowaCountyPress.net - a Weather Ready Nation partner - are bringing you a series of articles this week to help you improve your safety and preparedness.
Flood and wildfire seasons are approaching. You should know your risks and make your plans to improve your outcomes.
The National Weather Service wants everyone in the United States to be part of a Weather-Ready nation. Colorado has more than its fair share of floods, flash floods, and wildfires. You should be weather alert and weather-ready, knowing how to stay safe when floods and wildfires affect your area.
This week, March 1-7, is Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Awareness Week. Now is the time to learn about flood and wildfire risks in Colorado, and to develop your plans to improve your outcome.
Flood prone areas have been identified in over 250 cities and towns and in all 64 counties in Colorado. Over 250,000 people live in floodplains in Colorado. There are estimated to be 65,000 homes and 15,000 commercial, industrial, and business structures in identified floodplains. There are likely many more structures located within unmapped flood hazard areas. The value of the property, structures, and contents located in the identified floodplains is estimated to be around $15 billion.
Floods and flash floods have killed over 400 people in Colorado since the turn of the 20th century. The historic weather pattern of September 2013 reminds us all that floods are a major concern across the Centennial state. Floods have caused billions of dollars of damage in Colorado.
On average, 2,500 wildfires occur across Colorado each year. Since 2012, eight people have been killed when wildfires occurred in the wildland-urban interface.
The National Weather Service forecast offices which serve Colorado and KiowaCountyPress.net will be posting a series of articles during Colorado Flood Safety and Wildfire Awareness Week, covering the following topics:
- Sunday: Introduction to the week (this article)
- Monday: Flood watches and warnings
- Tuesday: River floods
- Wednesday: Flash floods
- Thursday: Fire forecasts, watches and warnings
- Friday: Wildfire safety and mitigation
- Saturday: Review of the week
More information on floods and wildfires is available at your local National Weather Service web sites