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Floods in central Texas, August 1978

January 1, 1979

Catastrophic floods, which resulted in millions of dollars in property damages and the loss of 33 lives, occurred in Central Texas during August 1-4, 1978, as a result of intense rainfall produced by the remnants of tropical storm Amelia. Rainfall in excess of 30 inches was unofficially reported at several locations, while the highest 24-hour amount recorded by the National·Weather Service was 29.05 inches at Albany in Shackelford County.

Major flooding occurred on the Medina River and triputaries above Medina Lake and on the Guadalupe River and tributaries above Canyon Lake. Minor to severe flooding occurred on the tributaries of the Nueces River, on the Clear Fork Brazos River and tributaries, and on the Llano and Pedernales Rivers, which are tributaries of the Colorado River.

Peak discharges at several streamflow stations exceeded the historic peaks, and the flood magnitude and frequency data for the Guadalupe River above Canyon Lake, the Medina River near Pipe Creek, and Clear Fork Brazos River indicate that the August 1978 flood had a recurrence interval in excess of 100 years. The highest unit discharge observed during this flood was 3,010 cubic feet per second from a 14.1-square-mil.e drainage area of Spring Creek, which is tributary to the Pedernales River.

Publication Year 1979
Title Floods in central Texas, August 1978
DOI 10.3133/ofr79682
Authors E.E. Schroeder, B.C. Massey, Kidd M. Waddell
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Open-File Report
Series Number 79-682
Index ID ofr79682
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Texas Water Science Center