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Are You Prepared For Flooding?

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The Southern Tier is no stranger to flooding. With spring melt-offs around the corner, the National Weather Service in Binghamton is urging residents to practice preparedness and know what to do if waters rise. 

  • Know if you live in a floodplain.

David Nicosia, the Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Binghamton says the first step to safety is being informed. Flood maps are available through counties and FEMA. 

  • How are you going to get warnings?

When the National Weather Service puts out a flood warning, it doesn't do any good if no one sees it. Make sure you have a way to get those warnings, whether on a phone, internet, or the TV. With flash flooding, the water can rise very quickly, so warnings may be the only way residents know a flood is happening.

  • At what point does a river become a danger?

While the most common flooding we see in our area is flash flooding, the rivers can be a major concern. Nicosia says residents near rivers should stay informed and know at what water level they should evacuate. Nicosia says river forecast information can be found on the National Weather Service's Advanced Hydrologic Predictions webpage. 

"If it's just going over its banks, that's just minor flooding, that's not going to impact a lot of people, versus moderate and major flooding where you start seeing the impacts," says Nicosia.

  • Don't drive into flood waters.

Nicosia says he can not stress enough the importance of not driving into flooded roadways. If water is moving, there's a risk of cars getting pulled along with it. If the water is standing still, cars may stall, leaving you stranded in flood waters. 

The National Weather Service says there is no current indication that flooding will happen this spring, but given the trend in our area, it's best to prepare now just in case.