U.S. River Conditions, January to March 2020

Download Video
Right-click and save to download

Detailed Description

This is an animation showing the changing conditions of USGS streamgages from January 1, 2020 to March 31, 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. During most of the animation, much of central and southeastern Colorado experienced persistent low flows. In early January, 5 inches of rain were forecast for parts of Indiana and USGS deployed crews to respond to flooding. The Pacific Northwest was hit with an atmospheric river in early February which caused major flooding in northwest Washington. On the other side of the country, several record-breaking flows were measured in the Southeast as 18 USGS crews responded to flooding and repaired gages in early to mid-February. In early March, the Las Vegas Wash flooded as it rose to the highest flows seen in 8 years. In Florida during March, above average temperatures and below average rainfall amid the height of the dry season intensified low flows. As the first 3 months of 2020 came to a close, flooding in Ohio near the end of March resulted in a collapsed state road; USGS gage data were used to provide flood guidance in the area. 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.


Date Taken:

Length: 00:01:02

Location Taken: US

Video Credits

Content contributors: Robert Mason, Athena Clark, Karl Winters Visualization Developers: Marty Wernimont