As urban areas continue to develop across the country, the issue of urban flooding is becoming more relevant than ever before. Soil usually absorbs rain water, but as cities generally contain more concrete than soil, urban areas depend on a limited number of draining systems. These draining systems cause water to build up beneath city streets during heavy rainfall and therefore, cities tend to flood easily.
Flooding city streets and blocking roadways, urban flooding can have many consequences on daily life. Another example includes the phenomenon referred to as “dancing drain covers” in which the water that has built up in draining systems overflows, lifting drain covers off of the street surface. The covers, however, can shift their position in addition to lifting off of the ground, leaving large, dangerous openings in the street that could be treacherous for pedestrians that are crossing the street or cars that are driving over them.
Though urban flooding is not seen as serious safety concern in the public eye, its damage is often akin to that of flooding from hurricanes or the overflow of rivers if the city is hit with enough rain in a short amount of time. Keeping this in mind, it is crucial to identify and be conscious of the likelihood of flooding based on your city’s geography. If your city is located on a coast or situated by a major river, it is at a higher risk of flooding due to the potential for storm surge or high tide from a large body of water and the possibility of runoff from a river. If the risk of flooding is high in your city, it may be beneficial to put together a flood kit in the case of a flooding emergency. This kit could include extra food, water, batteries, and flashlights, among other emergency items that could prove to be helpful during a serious flood.