Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Binghamton, NY

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NOUS41 KBGM 061315
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NYZ009-015>018-022>025-036-037-044>046-055>057-062-070400-

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BINGHAMTON NY
900 AM EST THU NOV 6 2014

...WINTER WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK CONTINUES IN NEW YORK...

YOUR NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BINGHAMTON IS URGING YOU
TO PREPARE FOR THE HARSH...AND SOMETIMES DANGEROUS
WEATHER THAT THE WINTER SEASON OFTEN BRINGS.

ONE OF OUR DEADLIEST WINTER WEATHER HAZARDS IS FLOODING.

IN UPSTATE NEW YORK ONE USUALLY ASSOCIATES SNOW...ICE...AND
BITING COLD WITH WINTER. BUT SOMETIMES NATURE THROWS A CURVE
AT US WITH UNSEASONABLE WARMTH...AND WITH IT...RAIN.

A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT FACTORS WORK TOGETHER TO PRODUCE FLOODS
IN WINTER.

WHEN UNSEASONABLE WARMTH COMES TO THE REGION IT WILL OFTEN
MELT MUCH...IF NOT ALL OF THE SNOW ON THE GROUND IN THE
LOWER ELEVATIONS. THE MELTING SNOW WILL SATURATE THE GROUND
AND ALSO BEGIN TO SWELL THE RIVERS.

OFTEN THE WARMER AIR WILL RISE OVER COLDER AIR TRAPPED IN THE
REGION. AS THIS AIR RISES IT RESULTS IN CLOUDS AND RAIN...
WHICH WILL COMBINE WITH THE MELTING SNOW TO INCREASE FLOWS IN
THE RIVERS. WHEN THIS MELTING SNOW COMBINES WITH HEAVY RAINS
IT CAN PUT ENOUGH WATER INTO THE RIVERS TO SEND THEM OVER
THEIR BANKS.

SOME OF OUR WORST WINTER FLOODS ARE CAUSED BY INTENSE CYCLONES
THAT TRACK FROM THE OHIO VALLEY NORTHEAST UP THE SAINT LAWRENCE
VALLEY INTO CANADA. THESE STORMS BRING A LOT OF WARM AND MOIST
AIR INTO THE REGION FROM THE GULF OF MEXICO AND THE ATLANTIC...
BRINGING BOTH MILD TEMPERATURES AND HEAVY RAIN TO THE REGION.

IN APRIL 2005...THE CATSKILLS SAW SOME OF THE WORST FLOODING ON
RECORD. THE COMBINATION OF FIVE TO SEVEN INCHES OF RAINFALL ON
TOP OF A SNOWPACK CONTAINING TWO TO THREE INCHES OF ADDITIONAL
WATER PRODUCED RECORD RIVER FLOWS AT SOME LOCATIONS. FOR
EXAMPLE...THE RIVER GAUGE AT CALLICOON ON THE DELAWARE RIVER IN
SULLIVAN COUNTY CRESTED AT 17.97 FEET ON APRIL 3 2005 WHICH...UP TO
THAT TIME...WAS THE HIGHEST LEVEL RECORDED AT THE GAUGE SINCE 1975.

ANOTHER WINTER PROBLEM IN THIS AREA IS FLOODING CAUSED BY ICE JAMS
ON THE RIVERS. AS RIVER FLOWS INCREASE...WATER LEVELS RISE.
SINCE ICE THAT COVERS THE RIVERS IS LIGHTER THAN WATER IT WILL
TEND TO FLOAT. UNDER THE PRESSURE IT WILL OFTEN BREAK INTO HUGE
SLABS. THESE SLABS WILL THEN MOVE DOWNSTREAM IN THE CURRENT UNTIL
THEY RUN INTO AN OBSTRUCTION SUCH AS A BEND...ISLAND...OR
WIDE SHALLOW AREA. WHEN THIS HAPPENS THE ICE WILL OFTEN STOP
AND PILE UP INTO A JAM. WHEN THE FLOW OF THE RIVER IS BLOCKED BY
AN ICE JAM...THE WATER CAN OVERFLOW THE RIVER BANKS IN LESS
THAN AN HOUR AS IT TRIES TO GET AROUND THE ICE. AS THE WATER
RISES...THE PRESSURE CAN BREAK THE JAM AND RELEASE A SUDDEN SURGE
OF WATER AND ICE DOWN THE RIVER.

WHILE ICE JAMS OFTEN FORM IN THE SAME SPOTS YEAR AFTER YEAR IT
IS NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE TO PREDICT EXACTLY WHEN OR WHERE A JAM
WILL FORM...OR WHEN ONE WILL BREAK. SOMETIMES A JAM THAT FORMS
IN EARLY WINTER WILL STAY PUT MOST OF THE WINTER.

SEVERE FLOODING OF ROADS AND BUILT UP AREAS CAN ALSO OCCUR
WHEN MOUNDS OF PLOWED SNOW AND ICE BLOCK AND PLUG UP THE
GRATES AND STORM DRAINS...SO THE WATER FROM THE PAVEMENT
HAS NO WHERE TO GO. THIS STANDING WATER CAN CAUSE DANGEROUS
BLACK ICE IF IT FREEZES.

FOR MORE INFORMATION GO TO HTTP://WEATHER.GOV/BGM/WWAW
YOU CAN ALSO VISIT OUR FACEBOOK PAGE WHICH CAN BE ACCESSED
AT HTTP://WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/NWSBINGHAMTON AND TWITTER AT
HTTP://WWW.TWITTER.COM/NWSBINGHAMTON  YOU CAN ALSO FOLLOW
ALONG USING THE HASHTAG #WINTERPREP.

YOU CAN ALSO CONTACT DAVE NICOSIA WARNING COORDINATION
METEOROLOGIST FOR NOAA`S NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN
BINGHAMTON AT 607-770-9531 X 223 OR VIA EMAIL AT
DAVID.NICOSIA@NOAA.GOV

$$

DJN





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