Today is the start of Severe Weather Awareness Week in Iowa, but flooding is already on the minds of many Iowans after this winter’s heavy snowfall. Jeff Johnson, the warning coordination meteorologist at the National Weather Service office in Des Moines, says flooding can be a year-round problem.
Johnson says flooding can "sneak up" on you in several seasons in Iowa, like the snowmelt season which we’re just now concluding with only minor headaches — no severe, widespread flooding. Johnson says flooding can be deadly. He says statistics show flash flooding is the leading severe weather-related cause of death in the country. Johnson says if you see flood waters covering a road, head the other direction.
He quotes the catch phrase, "Turn around, don’t drown," as you don’t know how deep the water may be over a road, or if, in fact, the road is even still there under the water. Johnson says with the dangers of flash flooding, the Weather Service will keep people informed when flash flooding could happen. For more information about Severe Weather Awareness Week, log on to the National Weather Service website .