Friday, March 16, 2012

After a warm winter, flood threat down in much of US

Renee Schoof in the Kansas City Start via McClatchy: After an unusually warm winter with low snowfall in much of the United States, no part of the country faces a high risk of flooding this spring, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported Thursday in its annual forecast of floods, droughts and spring temperatures.

For many areas, the forecast was a relief after last year's historic floods over many weeks on the Mississippi River in the northern and central parts of the country. This year, the Mississippi and many other rivers have only a normal risk of flooding. Nationwide, "this is the first time in four years without a high risk of major flooding," Laura Furgione, deputy director of the National Weather Service, said at a briefing.

The only places with above-average spring flood risks are the Ohio River Valley - including parts of western Illinois, much of Indiana and southwestern Kentucky, where there was above-normal precipitation during the winter - and parts of Louisiana and Mississippi....

The Cairo Bridge, spanning the Ohio River near Cairo, Illinois

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