A flood is an overflow of water that submerges land that is usually dry. In the sense of "flowing water", the word may also be applied to the inflow of the tide. Floods are an area of study of the discipline hydrology and are of significant concern in agriculture, civil engineering and public health.
The Burchardi Flood was a storm tide that struck the North Sea coast of North Frisia and Dithmarschen on the night between 11 and 12 October 1634. Overrunning dikes, it shattered the coastline and caused thousands of deaths (8,000 to 15,000 people drowned).
New Hampshire/Maine Flood of October 1785. In New Hampshire, a significant flood struck the Cocheco, Baker, Pemigewasset, Contoocook and Merrimack rivers on 23 October which established records at Lowell which held until 1902. The Androscoggin River flooded significantly, which destroyed many homesteads in what would become Bethel, Maine. Those that survived the flood moved uphill into less valuable, 100-acre (0.40 km2) plots. Turner's first mill was destroyed during this inundation.
Great Pumpkin Flood of October 1786. Central Pennsylvania flood. Received its name due to the pumpkins that were washed away in the flood on 5 October. It was a major flood in the Susquehanna River basin.
Mississippi River Flood of July 1788. Severe flooding of the Mississippi River resulted from a hurricane landfall
Red River of the South flood of 1800. According to the Caddo tribe, a "great flood" moved down the river and reinforced the "Great Log Raft" on the river. This raft was a natural dam that increased water levels on some of the Red River tributaries. This process formed Caddo Lake.
Mississippi River Flood of 1809. All of the lower Mississippi River was inundated by flooding.
Mississippi River Flood of 1825. The flood of 1825 is the last known inundation of New Orleans due to spring flooding
Great Mississippi River Flood of 1844. The largest flood ever recorded on the Missouri River and Upper Mississippi River in terms of discharge. This flood was particularly devastating since the region had few if any levees at the time. Among the hardest hit were the Wyandot who lost 100 people in the diseases that occurred after the flood. The flood also is the highest recorded for the Mississippi River at St. Louis. After the flood, Congress in 1849 passed the Swamp Act providing land grants to build stronger levees.
Great Mississippi River Flood of 1851. The flood occurred after record-setting rainfalls across the U.S. Midwest and Plains from May to August 1851. The State of Iowa experienced significant flooding extending to the Lower Mississippi River basin. Historical evidence suggest flooding occurred in the eastern Plains, from Nebraska to the Red River basin, but these areas were sparsely settled in 1851. Heavy rainfall also occurred in the Ohio River basin. In June, major flooding on the Mississippi River was experienced.
The 1872 Baltic Sea flood. Storm surge that affected the Baltic Sea coast from Denmark to Pomerania on the night of 12–13 November 1872. The flood cost the lives of at least 271 people on the Baltic Sea coast; 2,850 houses were destroyed or at least badly damaged and 15,160 people left homeless as a result.
Great Mississippi River Flood of 1874. Heavy spring rains caused the Mississippi River to overflow, breaching levees and flooding enormous swathes of the Lower Mississippi Valley. The flooding began in February and only began to recede on 20 May. According to the New Orleans Daily Picayune of 3 May, thirty-one of Louisiana's fifty-three parishes (home to some 375,000 people) were entirely or partially underwater. The Picayune also reported that breaches at Hushpakana[sic.] and Bolivar, Mississippi, had "transformed the Yazoo Valley into an inland lake." Mayor Louis A. Wiltz of New Orleans published a circular on 30 May addressed to "the Mayors of thirty-four large American cities" seeking contributions of cash and provisions for relief efforts. In the circular, the Flood of 1874 was described as the highest on record. It also included the observations of former U.S. Surveyor General for Louisiana William J. McCulloh, who estimated that a total of 12,565,060 acres had been flooded across Louisiana (8,065,000), Mississippi (2,500,000), and Arkansas (2,000,000).
In June 1910 heavy rains caused extreme flooding throughout central Europe killing more than 1200 people.
The Great Flood of 1913, which included the Great Dayton Flood, killed 650 people and destroyed 20,000 homes in the United States. It also damaged historic photographic plates belonging to Wilbur and Orville Wright. It ended canal transportation in Ohio.
The Ohio River flood of 1937 occurred in late January and February 1937, causing damage along the Ohio River and several smaller tributaries from Pittsburgh, Illinois, to Cairo, Illinois. This flood left close to one million people homeless, 385 dead, and $50,000,000 worth of damage.
The 1948 Berwickshire flood occurred on 12 August, when extremely heavy rain for the preceding six days caused the rivers Tweed, Blackadder, Whiteadder, Till and Eye Water in southern Scotland to rise more than 10 feet and wash away 20 bridges. Railway service was interrupted for months.
The Lynmouth flood of 1952 killed 34 people, more than any other British flood up to then, it was also very destructive and destroyed over 80 buildings in the town of Lynmouth, Devon, United Kingdom.
The North Sea flood of 1962 killed almost 330 people along the coasts of southeastern England, Germany, and southern Denmark. 318 of the deaths occurred in Hamburg, Germany, and many millions of pounds' worth of damage was done.
On 25 October 1964, high water due to heavy rains upstream caused the River Sava to overflow its embankments in Zagreb, Croatia, killing 17 people, flooding much of the city, and causing devastating material damage.
On the night of 9 June 1972 the people of Rapid City, South Dakota in the United States were struck by a deadly flood that lasted two days. It took 238 lives and caused millions of dollars in damage.
In 1974, the dying cyclone Wanda triggered major flooding in Brisbane, Australia killing 6 people and leaving hundreds homeless.
On 2 July 1975, many areas of Romanian Cuverture Charpatinas (e.g. Buzau, Prahova County), were struck by major flooding.
In August 1975, the Banqiao Dam in China breaks apart under excess rainfall and damage from Typhoon Nina, drowning about 26,000 and caused the lives of another 140,000 in resulting epidemics.
On July 31, 1976, a nearly stationary thunderstorm caused a major flash flood in the infamous Big Thompson River Canyon, claiming 139 lives. This occurred on the eve of Colorado's centennial.
During the 1980s, the Great Salt Lake reached record high water levels due to a large amount of rain and its lack of an outlet. Places such as Saltair were inundated.
The South African town of Laingsburg was basically destroyed on 25 January 1981, when 104 of its 900 inhabitants died during a flood that swept through the town and left only about 25 houses standing
In 1982, the river Jucar in Spain breaks the Tous Reservoir, flooding the surrounding land in a deluge of 16,000 m3/s of water, and killing 30 people.
In the winter of 1983, the Pacific Northwest of the United States saw one of the worst floods on record for that region, and some states recorded their wettest winter ever. Damage estimates are as high as $1.1 billion.
January 1992 saw severe floods in South America, most notably Brazil.
In Alaska, United States, from May to September 1992 it was unusually wet, causing the 100 year flood. Snow melt only made the floods worse.
Ethiopia saw one of its worst floods ever in August 2006.
Surat, a city of 5 million people in India, witnessed the largest flood in its history during 4 to 10 August 2006. Water discharged for 30 hours from Ukai dam, which flooded the city.
Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, and Sabah suffered floods between December 2006 and January 2007. It killed hundreds and forced 100,000 people to be evacuated in Johor alone. Floods hit the country's capital Kuala Lumpur in January 2007, killing 80. It was the worst flood in Malaysia for over 100 years.
The 2007 Hunter Floods inundated large areas of the cities of Maitland and Newcastle in Australia in June 2007, claimed 11 lives and forced the evacuation of 4,000 people in Central Maitland.
Between late May 2007 and early August 2007, severe flash floods hit most of the United Kingdom, with the most affected area in the country being Yorkshire. The city of Sheffield (in Yorkshire) was the worst affected city in the country, a month's worth of rain fell on the city in just 18 hours on 25 June 2007, bursting the banks of the River Don in that city. There were also fears that the Ulley Reservoir in Sheffield would fail, if it did it would have killed hundreds. 6 people were killed across the country.
The 2007 Africa Floods was one of the worst and most destructive floods in recorded history on the continent of Africa with 14 countries affected.
The 2008 Indian floods affected several states in India between July 2008 and September 2008 during an unusually wet monsoon season. The floods caused severe damage, and killed an estimated 2404 people.
In June 2009, minor flooding hit parts of Sheffield City Centre in Sheffield, England. Waters reached only about half a foot deep as the River Don broke its banks, but considerable damage was still caused.
On 4 August 2010, at 9:25 am EST a major thunderstorm producing large hail and winds in excess of 60 mph (97 km/h) advanced at the leading edge of a cold front moving across the American Midwest, causing a flash flood that struck Louisville, Kentucky, and portions of the surrounding Kentuckiana region.
The January 2011 Brazil floods are considered the worst in the country's history. As of 18 January 2011, the floods had taken about 700 lives and 14,000 people were homeless mainly due to landslides.
The Mississippi River floods in April and May 2011 were among the largest and most damaging recorded along the U.S. waterway.
In June 2011, flooding in China affected more than 4.8 million people, with 100,000 evacuated and 54 reported dead.
In late July, the 2011 Thailand floods spread through the provinces of Northern, Northeastern and Central Thailand along the Mekong and Chao Phraya river basins and persisted in some areas until mid-January 2012.
In July 2012, heavy torrential rains caused floods in Kyushu, Japan, leaving 32 people dead or missing.
In 2012 Great Britain and Ireland floods caused many floods in the United Kingdom, in April floods and gales hit most of England causing flooding and power outages, on 28 June 2012 there were two severe supercell thunderstorms which traveled across the West Midlands causing flash flooding, on 6 July 2012 heavy rainfall brought floods to the South West of England with the Met Office issuing red rain warnings, flooding later returned to the UK on 23 November 2012, as heavy persistent rainfall fell in South West England which caused rivers to burst their banks, the rain later pushed into the Midlands overnight causing more flooding, on 26 November 2012 another band of rain pushed into South West England, The Environment Agency issued three severe flood warnings for the South West England and 90 flood warnings, the following day the Environment Agency issued 110 flood warning for the Midlands, most of which were for the River Avon and the River Severn.
Many parts of the United Kingdom experienced flooding at the start of this year. In January and then again in February the River Thames breached its banks resulting in severe flooding to many homes and properties in heavily populated parts of the Thames Valley area.
Between 2 and 30 April 2014, flood events in the United-States, caused by an important tornado outbreak.
In May 2014, multiple floods affected a large area of Southeastern Europe. A low-pressure area named "Yvette" brought flooding from 14 to 16 May. Bosnia, Serbia and Romania were hit by the biggest flood in their modern history. Several cities were left behind without fresh water or food.
In October 2009, flooding occurred across many parts of South India. It was one of the worst floods in the area in the last 100 years, killing at least 299 people and making 500,000 homeless.
The Leh floods occurred on 6 August 2010 in Leh, the largest town in Ladakh, a region of the northernmost Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. At least 193 people are reported to have died, five of whom were foreign tourists, after a cloudburst and heavy overnight rains triggered flash floods and mudslides. A further 200 people were reported missing and thousands more were rendered homeless after the flooding caused extensive damage to property and infrastructure.
The 2014 South India floods in Visakhapatnam which destroyed many things and landslides caused by heavy rainfall and thousands more were rendered homeless after the flooding caused extensive damage to property and infrastructure.[clarification needed]
The 2015 South India Floods in Chennai due to the heavy rain fall of northeast monsoons in 2015 is considered one of the major disasters in the state of Tamil Nadu. It occurred from November end till the mid of second week of December.
In 2010, from mid-July till mid-August – Pakistan's four provinces (Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Southern Punjab and Sindh) were badly affected during the monsoon rains when dams, rivers and lakes overflowed, killing at least 1,750 people, injuring 2,500 and affecting 23 million people. The flood is considered the worst in Pakistan's history, affecting people of all four provinces and Asad Jamu and Kashmir Region of Pakistan. (see 2010 Pakistan floods)
2011 Thailand floods started from July 2011 until January 2012 resulted in a total of 815 deaths, 13.6 million people affected, 65 provinces were declared flood disaster zones, over 20,000 square kilometers of farmland was damaged and 7 industrial estates was temporarily shut down causing over US$45.7 billion (1.4 trillion Baht) of over all damage.
One of France's worst floods of the 20th century occurred in 1910. The end of 1909 and early 1910 saw a period of heavy rain and snow fall over a period of 3 months. The level of the Seine began to rise rapidly from 18 to 20 January, rising to a maximum of 8.62 meters above normal on the 28th. Some 4 billion cubic meters of river water, contaminated with river sediment and municipal sewage, flooded over 5 square kilometers of Paris. There were over 150,000 casualties and over 20,000 buildings flooded.
From 24 to 28 November 1959, rivers flooded under excess of rainfall causing hundreds people homeless and storm tide destroyed houses in Metaponto. One person death drowned in Policoro. Heavy rainfall caused also landslides in Pisticci.
In the summer 1987, heavy precipitation caused the Valtellina disaster in the Valtellina valley in Lombardy, killing 53 people and inflicting serious damage to infrastructures, landscape, towns and economy.
On 6 November 1994, the southern part of Piedmont was hit by floods from the Po and Tanaro rivers; there were 70 casualties and 2,226 people lost their homes.
2007 United Kingdom floods – 6 people killed. Whole country affected, with Yorkshire the worst hit county. Yorkshire suffers many road and rail closures, power cuts and evacuations with Sheffield the worst hit place in the country.
Winter storms of 2013–2014 in the United Kingdom – A continuous stream of major storms and heavy rain falls primarily on the southern British Isles, Somerset Devon and Cornwall worst affected. Loss of large areas of agricultural land, many flood records broken. Main Railway line to Cornwall severed at Dawlish.
2002 Glasgow floods – 200 people immediately evacuated, but the water supply of 140 thousand people was affected.
December 2015 – Flooding of Conwy River.
Llanrwst from the air during December 2015 flooding.
On 14 July 1987, a series of strong thunderstorms crossed the Island of Montreal, between the noon hour and 2:30 p.m. causing the Montreal Flood of 1987. Over 100 millimetres (3.9 inches) of rain fell during this very short period of time. The sewer systems were overwhelmed by the deluge and the city was paralyzed by the flooded roads. Autoroute 15, a sunken highway also known as the Decarie Expressway, soon filled with water trapping motorists. Some 350,000 houses lost electricity, and tens of thousands had flooded basements. Two people died, one in a submerged car and another who was electrocuted.
On 19 July 1996 The worst flood in the Quebec province, in Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean
One of Canada's most devastating floods occurred in southern Alberta in June 2005. The flooding affected many major metropolitan areas including Calgary. Four deaths resulted from the three-week flood.
The Great Dayton Flood of 1913 killed 360 people and destroyed 20,000 homes in the United States. It also damaged historic photographic plates belonging to Wilbur and Orville Wright. It caused the end of canal transportation in Ohio.
The 1916 Hatfield Flood of San Diego, California, destroyed the Sweetwater and Lower Otay Dams, and caused 22 deaths and $4.5 million in damages.
The Vermont flood of 1927 is probably the worst flood in Vermont history doing $30 million in damages, which would be $270 million today, killed over 83 people and left 9,000 homeless.
The Ohio River flood of 1937 took place in late January and February 1937. With damage stretching from Pittsburgh to Cairo, Illinois, one million were left homeless, with 385 dead and property losses reaching $500 million.
In 1957, storm surge flooding from Hurricane Audrey killed about 400 people in southwest Louisiana.
The floods of January 2011 in Brazil were considered the worst in the country's history. As of 18 January, the floods had taken about 700 lives and 14,000 people were homeless mainly due to landslides.