U.S. River Conditions, April to June 2020

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Detailed Description

This is an animation showing the changing conditions of USGS streamgages from April 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020. The conditions shown range from the driest condition seen at a gage (red open circles) to the wettest (blue closed circles). There is also a purple ring added to indicate gages that are flooding. While we do see floods in this animation, we also see a number of low flow conditions around the country. To start, drought conditions in Florida continue from March through the end of May. At the end of May, we start to see drought conditions in parts of the Southwest that last through June. By mid-June we see drought conditions develop in Puerto Rico and also in New England. While parts of the country are experiencing drought conditions, other parts are experiencing wetter than normal conditions. Frontal systems in April cause high water conditions in much of the Eastern U.S. From mid-April to early may, we see flooding in the Eastern Dakotas along the Red River of the North, the James River, and the Sioux River. In mid-May, flooding in the Upper Midwest leads to two dam failures in Michigan. Rivers are flooding in the Mid-Atlantic (Virginia and the Carolinas) at the end of May. Then, Tropical Storm Cristobal brings high water from the Gulf Coast to the Upper Midwest between June 8 to 14. Lastly, flooding on the James River in South Dakota continues from the beginning of April through the end of June. Note that both USGS gage height and National Weather Service flood stage levels are necessary to determine flooding conditions and were available for 38% of streamgages at the time this graphic was produced. Only publicly available data from the National Water Information System Website was used and some gages are missing gage height even when they have flow.
 

Details

Date Taken:

Length: 00:01:02

Location Taken: US

Video Credits

Content contributors: Robert Mason, Athena Clark, Karl Winters Visualization Developers: Lindsay Platt, Alicia Rhoades, Marty Wernimont
 

Transcript

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