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Snowmelt Flood Watch/Warning, Mar 30, 2017

Teton County Fire & Rescue–Advocating Safety
Snowmelt Flood Watch/Warning

The recent warm temperatures and rain showers have increased the snow melt, which increases our valley’s need to prepare for potential flooding. Frozen soil cannot absorb as much water as unfrozen soil; therefore, rain or rapid snow melt atop frozen soil can cause flooding.

A Flood Advisory means river or stream flows are elevated, or ponding of water in urban or other areas is occurring or is imminent. Excessive runoff will cause flooding of small creeks and streams, country roads, farmland, and other low-lying spots.

A Flood Warning means that flooding is imminent or occurring. All impacted parties should take necessary precautions immediately.

In case of flooding:

This image shows a flood watch/warning notice from Teton County Fire Protection District with safety advice.

• STAY INFORMED. Turn on the radio, TV or live weather feeds to know the conditions in your area.
• TURN AROUND, DON’T DROWN. People underestimate the force and power of water. A mere 6 inches of fast-moving flood water can knock over an adult. It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away a small car, while 2 feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles. It is NEVER safe to drive or walk into flood waters.
• HAVE A PLAN. If you live near creeks, streams, or rivers or in low-lying, flood-prone areas, devise a flood evacuation plan and have the tools and equipment necessary to protect your property from possible flood damage.
• STAY BACK. Remember that when water levels rise unexpectedly, you and your pets should stay back from creek/river banks, which may be slippery or erode easily.
• INFORM OTHERS. Report flooding to local law enforcement when you can do so safely.
• BE PREPARED. Prepare your vehicle with a well-stocked emergency kit.
• DON’T TOUCH. Take care when stepping into a flooded area. Be aware that submerged outlets or electrical cords may energize the water, posing a potentially lethal trap.
• ENLIST A PROFESSIONAL. Hire a qualified electrician to check any flooded building’s wiring, assess other damages, and proceed with repair.

If you have any questions or concerns, please call or email Division Chief Giles at 208-715-5201 or Sources:, NWS